Real Madrid coach Zinedine Zidane says he agrees with five-time Ballon d’Or winner Cristiano Ronaldo’s own view that he is the best player in football history.
A burst of goals as Madrid retained the Champions League and won a first La Liga in five years last season proved decisive as Ronaldo, 32, equalled the record number of Ballon d’Ors held by long-time rival Lionel Messi of Barcelona.
Speaking at the gala ceremony in Paris on Thursday as he won his latest award, the Portugal captain claimed that he now felt he was the greatest footballer ever.
And Zidane told a news conference that he agreed as he could not argue with Ronaldo’s 418 goals in 412 games for Madrid along with the 26 team trophies he has won across his career.
“Yes,” Zidane said. “There have been many players who have made history at this club. But nobody has done what he has — the statistics speak for that. What he has done is impressive. So I think yes [he is the best in history].”
Zidane, who won the Ballon d’Or in 1998, smiled when asked if he or Ronaldo was the better player.
“I was clearly better. If I have to choose, I choose myself,” Zidane said. “But seriously, you know I think Cristiano is much better, although I had a good career. There are no more words to define him. What he does every day, every game, is phenomenal. He has made history at this club, and keeps doing that, and I hope it will continue until he retires here.”