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Lionel Messi hails Cristiano Ronanldo's form

Updated: Thursday, 21 Nov 2013 12:56 | Comments

Messi full of praise for Ronaldo's exploits
Messi full of praise for Ronaldo's exploits

Barcelona star Lionel Messi has paid tribute to Cristiano Ronaldo's recent form.

The pair are widely regarded as the two best players in the world and while Messi collected his second Golden Shoe in a row on Wednesday after bagging 46 goals last season, it is Ronaldo who has been making the headlines recently.

The Real Madrid forward has scored hat-tricks in his last two matches at the Bernabeu and bagged an important treble to seal Portugal's place at next year's World Cup following their victory over Sweden in the two-legged play-off.

Despite the two vying for the prestigious Ballon d'Or award, Messi had warm words for his great rival.

"He is always there scoring goals in all the games and taking part in his club and national side," Messi told Spanish newspaper Marca.

"He has been doing that for many years and whether he is at his peak or a bit below it makes no difference."

Messi, who is sidelined for eight weeks after tearing his hamstring against Real Betis earlier this month, also signalled his intention to remain at Barcelona for the rest of his career.

There has been speculation the 26-year-old could be tempted for a fresh challenge and there would be no shortage of takers.

However, Messi said: "My intention is to stay with Barcelona for good.

"I am grateful if what they say is true and there are people interested. It makes you proud that they say such things. But my life is with Barcelona."

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