Fabio Capello: 'Cristiano Ronaldo deserves Ballon d'Or over Lionel Messi'

Fabio Capello backs Cristiano Ronaldo to triumph over Lionel Messi in the individual stakes and claim the FIFA Ballon d'Or.

Former Real Madrid manager Fabio Capello has backed Cristiano Ronaldo to usurp Lionel Messi as the world's best player by winning the FIFA Ballon d'Or in January.

The Portuguese forward is tipped to pick up the game's most coveted individual prize for the first time since 2008, having hit 66 goals for club and country in 2013 - including seven hat-tricks.

However, the 28-year-old faces stiff competition from Bayern Munich's Franck Ribery and the Barcelona ace, but the legendary Italian is convinced that Ronaldo is worthy of the gong for his four-goal contribution in sealing Portugal's World Cup ticket.

Speaking to Onda Cero, Capello said: "If anyone deserves the Ballon d'Or, it's Cristiano Ronaldo.

"He's putting in impressive displays for Real Madrid and Portugal. What he did in the playoff against Sweden was spectacular.

"Scoring four goals and taking your country to the World Cup are things that you have to value when you cast your votes."

The award is poised to be handed out at a FIFA ceremony in Zurich next month.

Paris Saint-Germain's Zlatan Ibrahimovic celebrates after scoring the opening goal against Olympiakos during their Champions League group match on November 27, 2013
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TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
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2Atletico MadridAtletico1912612882042
3Valencia19124340192140
4Real Madrid1895432171532
5Villarreal199462621531
6Sevilla199282328-529
7EibarEibar198382431-727
8Getafe207672318527
9Real Betis198383336-327
10Athletic Bilbao206862019126
11GironaGirona197572828026
12Celta Vigo197483327625
13Leganes187381517-224
14Espanyol196671521-624
15Real Sociedad196583334-123
16Levante193971526-1118
17AlavesAlaves1960131427-1318
18Deportivo La CorunaDeportivo1944112137-1616
19Malaga1932141333-2011
20Las PalmasLas Palmas1932141446-3211
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