MX23RW : Friday, September 24 20:31:18| >> :120:9201:9201:

Juventus forward Cristiano Ronaldo opens up on Lionel Messi admiration

Juventus forward Cristiano Ronaldo acknowledges that he "admires" the career of Barcelona counterpart Lionel Messi.

Juventus forward Cristiano Ronaldo has acknowledged that he regards his perceived rivalry with Barcelona counterpart Lionel Messi as "healthy competition".

During his nine-year association with Real Madrid, Ronaldo and Messi regularly went head-to-head, both individually and when it came to trying to win the La Liga crown for their respective teams.

While the comparisons between the pair are not made as often in the past, Ronaldo has admitted that he has enjoyed competing against the Argentine legend.

Speaking to RMC Sport, Ronaldo said: "I really admire the career he has had so far. He has already said that he had trouble when I left the Spanish league because it is a rivalry that he appreciates.

"It is a good rivalry that exists in football, but this is no exception. Michael Jordan had rivals in basketball, Ayrton Senna and Alain Prost were great rivals in Formula One.

"The only common point between all the big rivalries in the sport is that they are healthy."

Since 2008, the pair have won all but one of the Ballon d'Or accolades.

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