Cristiano Ronaldo says he deserves to win the Ballon d’Or for a sixth time, over rivals including Antoine Griezmann, Luka Modric, Kylian Mbappe and Lionel Messi.
Ronaldo and Messi have won the award five times each over the last decade, but the duo faces stronger competition in 2018 than for many years.
Griezmann and Mbappe have a World Cup win on their records, while Modric claimed the Golden Ball at Russia 2018 for his star performances in Croatia’s run to the final.
Ronaldo helped fire Real Madrid to a third consecutive Champions League crown before joining Juventus and he is in no doubt he should win the Ballon d’Or for a record-breaking sixth time.
“I said many times, winning a sixth Ballon d’Or is not an obsession,” Ronaldo said in a France Football interview . “And I do not ask the question in these terms.
“I already know, in my heart, that I am one of the best players in history. Of course, I want to win, this sixth Ballon d’Or!
“It would be a lie to tell you the opposite. I work for that. As I work to score goals and win games without being an obsession. The Ballon d’Or, yes, I think I deserve it.”
Ronaldo completed a £99m ($127) move to Juventus from Madrid during the summer transfer window, which ended his trophy-laden nine-year spell with the club.
The Portuguese superstar has thrived during his first few months in Turin, scoring seven goals in 12 matches across all competitions, most recently netting a brace against Empoli on Saturday .
Madrid meanwhile, have dropped seven points behind arch-rivals Barcelona in La Liga without their all-time record goalscorer, after losing 5-1 against the Spanish champions on Sunday.