Lionel Messi ignored Cristiano Ronaldo when choosing this year’s FIFA’s Best Men’s Player while the Barcelona talisman only put Robert Lewandowski third on his ballot.
After enjoying an historic treble-winning season with Bayern Munich, where he won the Champions League, the Bundesliga and the German Cup, Lewandowski was awarded FIFA’s best prize at a virtual ceremony on Thursday.
Now, just hours after the Polish star was announced as the winner, each vote from every national team’s captain and head coach have been revealed and some may argue that Messi has been tactical when it came to choosing his top three.
Lewandowski, who won the Best FIFA Men’s Player award, was only third on Messi’s ballot.
A document released by FIFA shows how everyone voted, and the Argentine superstar voted best pal Neymar as his first pick, Kylian Mbappe for silver while Lewandowski was only the third best player this year despite his outstanding campaign in 2020.
Most notably is that Ronaldo was nowhere to be seen on Messi’s voting card.
The 33-year-old usually includes his long-term rival in his top-three but decided to snub Ronaldo this time round.
Ronaldo, who snubbed Messi in last year’s voting, decided to go with the agreed consensus that Lewandowski was the best player this year while including Messi as second best this time around. The 35-year-old also included Mbappe on his ballot.
Ronaldo and Messi recently shared a pitch and it was the Portugal captain that came out on top after Juventus swept aside Barcelona at the Nou Camp.
The Real Madrid legend was full of praise for Messi, who he insisted was never a rival in his eyes.
‘I have always had a very good relationship with him,’ said Ronaldo.
‘I shared 12, 13 or 14 years of award ceremonies with him. I never saw him as a rival. He always tries to do what is best for his team and me too. I always got along very well with him.
‘But we know that in football, for the press, for the show, a rivalry is sought, but I have always gotten along well with him.’ [Mirror]