Cristiano Ronaldo has hit back at comments made by Ballon d'Or organizer Pascal Ferré, saying the editor-in-chief of France Football "lied" about his rivalry with Lionel Messi.
Ferré told the New York Times on Friday that Manchester United forward Ronaldo's sole ambition was to retire with more of the awards for the world's best player than Messi.
Argentine Messi, who joined Paris Saint-Germain on a free transfer from Barcelona during the close season, beat Bayern Munich striker Robert Lewandowski and Chelsea midfielder Jorginho to claim a record-extending seventh Ballon d'Or award.
"Pascal Ferré lied, he used my name to promote himself and to promote the publication he works for," Ronaldo, who has won the award five times, said in an Instagram post on Monday. "It is unacceptable that the person responsible for awarding such a prestigious prize could lie in this way, in absolute disrespect for someone who has always respected France Football and the Ballon d'Or."
France Football did not immediately respond to an emailed request for comment on Ronaldo's post.
"I always win for myself and for the clubs I represent, I win for myself and for those who love me. I don't win against someone," added the Portugal forward. "The biggest ambition of my career is to leave my name written in golden letters in the history of world football."
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(Reporting by Aadi Nair in Bengaluru; Editing by Peter Rutherford)