Despite the good year Cristiano Ronaldo has had – winning the Champions League and the European Championship – his countryman, Luis Nani believes the Ballon d’Or race is far from decided as Messi is still very much in it.

A rejuvenated Messi is getting all the accolades right now while Ronaldo is not getting much following a run goal drought with club.

Messi has scored 17 goals in 12 appearances for club and country this season while Ronaldo has only scored 10 in 18 matches.

With these improved stats, Messi’s chances of winning the Ballon d’Or greatly improved from what it was at the end of last season, and Nani recognizes this.

In Nani’s interview ahead of Barcelona’s visit to Valencia at the weekend, Nani addressed the Ballon d’Or question.

He said: “Messi is going through a great time at the moment but things aren’t decided yet and you won’t know until the end of the year who is the best in the world.”

“I know that Cristiano will fight hard with him all year for the Ballon d’Or. [But] Messi is a special player and there are very few who can compare with him,” he added.

Moving on to speak about the visit of Messi and co to the Estadio Mestalla, Nani expressed confidence that the Los Che can shock the Blaugrana if they take their chances.

Nani said:  “We have to be clinical. We have good players and a united team so that means that anything can happen.

“It isn’t going to be an easy game and I think the key to it could be knowing that there are times when we will suffer and then making the most of any opportunities that come our way.”

Author: Yemi Olarinre