LaLiga: Real Madrid boss, Lopetegi finally speaks on Ronaldo's move to Juventus


For the past nine years, these two superstars have dominated the game of football with Ronaldo and Messi winning five Ballon d'Or each.

Barca star Lionel Messi has now spoken out about Ronaldo's departure for the first time since the move.

Riley McGree has been nominated for the 2018 Federation Internationale de Football Association goal of the year alongside the likes of Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi.

Lionel Messi was controversially left out of the nominees for FIFA's Men's World Player of the Year prize when they were announced on Monday.

Portugal winger Ronaldo, the 2016 and 2017 victor, won a fifth Champions League title with Real Madrid in May before joining Juventus for £99m.

"Real Madrid are one of the best teams in the world and they have a great squad [but] it's evident that the absence of Ronaldo makes them less good and makes Juventus [one of the] clear favourites to win the Champions League", Messi told Catalunya Radio.

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Ronaldo and Bale face off in a battle of the Champions League overhead kicks - the Portugal icon's effort against current employers Juventus in the quarter-finals and Bale's acrobatic finish to help down Salah's Liverpool in the final.

Salah's strike in last December's Merseyside derby also makes the shortlist, with users voting for the victor.

While his worldwide team-mates geared up for games against Croatia and Italy, Ronaldo was put through his paces alongside Sami Khedira, who was left out of the recent Germany squad after a disappointing World Cup. However, former Real Madrid boss Zinedine Zidane has set the record straight.

"We have done okay but it is only the start and we have three weeks ahead with the Champions League".

The three coaches in contention for the women's game award are: Asako Takakura, who led Japan to the Asian Games title last week, Reynald Pedros of France and Sarina Wiegman of the Netherlands.