Xavi, who now plays for Al Sadd in Qatar, told Spanish radio station La SER earlier this week that despite his achievements Ronaldo couldn’t come close to matching those of Xavi’s former Barca teammate Lionel Messi.”Only a fool could have played football and not recognise Cristiano is an elite footballer,” said Xavi.”But he just has had bad luck to be around at the same time as Leo.”
Ronaldo responded with interest after Real Madrid’s 5-2 La Liga win over Osasuna on Saturday, labelling Xavi’s comments as irrelevant.”I am the most searched for player on the internet,” said Ronaldo, who scored six minutes into his Madrid return after a two-month injury layoff.
“When players, coaches want to appear on the front pages they talk about Cris, it is normal,” he said. “What do I care what Xavi says?
“Xavi plays in Qatar, it doesn’t have any relevance. Xavi has won everything, the World Cup, European Championships…and he has never won the Ballon d’Or.”
By contrast, Ronaldo is favourite to beat out Messi to his fourth Ballon d’Or in January after lifting both the Champions League with Madrid in May and then ending Portugal’s drought without a major tournament win at Euro 2016.