Cristiano Ronaldo
Cristiano Ronaldo is not pleased with how the Ballon d’Or and The Best FIFA Football Awards are handed out nowadays. Ahmed Yosri/Reuters

Al-Nassr's Cristiano Ronaldo has claimed that the Ballon d'Or and The Best FIFA Football Awards are not a true reflection of football anymore.

The Portugal forward scored more goals than any other player in 2023, as he found the net 54 times for both club and country. However, he was not on the 30-man nomination shortlist for the 2023 Ballon d'Or, nor was he one of the three finalists for The Best FIFA Men's Player award.

Whilst attending the 2023 Globe Soccer Awards ceremony in Dubai last Friday, Ronaldo spoke to the Portuguese sports publication, Record, and expressed what he thinks of the primary football awards now.

The five-time Ballon d'Or winner said: "I think that in a way these awards are losing credibility. We have to analyse the entire season. It's not to say that Messi didn't deserve it, or Haaland or even Mbappe. I simply no longer believe in these awards."

Ronaldo's long-term rival, Lionel Messi, was awarded The Best FIFA Men's Player for 2023 last week. Messi's win saw plenty of football fans and pundits criticise the decision as the award takes into consideration performances for the calendar year and therefore did not regard his FIFA World Cup win with Argentina from December 2022.

Whilst 2023 was not close at all to Messi's previous best years, he did have some success. In the calendar year, he won the Ligue 1 title with Paris Saint Germain and led his new side, Inter Miami, to the Leagues Cup, whilst netting 28 goals for club and country.

However, despite there being some achievements for the Argentinian in 2023, he did not pick up the more prestigious trophies, such as the UEFA Champions League, and was not close to being the highest goal scorer for the calendar year. Ronaldo, Erling Haaland, Kylian Mbappe and Harry Kane all managed to score over 50 goals in 2023.

Messi also won the 2023 Ballon d'Or last October, with that award win not receiving as much criticism due to it factoring in displays from August 2022 – July 2023. However, many still felt Messi's win was not justified as Manchester City's Haaland was better statistically and performance-wise over that period.

Haaland scored 52 goals for Manchester City in the 2022/23 season and was part of a team that won the Premier League, Champions League and FA Cup. These displays by the Norwegian striker were considered by many to be more than enough to win the recent editions of both the Ballon d'Or and The Best FIFA Men's Player award.

Ronaldo picked up three wins at the Globe Soccer Awards, including the Maradona Award for Best Goal Scorer of the Year, thanks to his 54 goals in 2023.

The Al-Nassr forward spoke on his pride at winning the award due to it taking stats into consideration. He said: "There are facts, there are numbers, and the numbers don't deceive. They can't take this trophy away from me because it's a reality. So, it makes me even happier because the numbers are facts."

He also picked up awards for Fans' Favourite Player of the Year and the Best Middle East Player.

When questioned whether his goal record in 2023 is comparable to other players because he is not playing in Europe, Ronaldo commented: "The 54 goals I scored, there may be those who say it's easier because I'm in Saudi Arabia. But football professionals know that it is difficult to score goals, whether in Saudi Arabia or in Italy, Spain or Portugal. A goal is a goal."

Ronaldo and Messi are scheduled to face off in the Riyadh Season Cup on February 1st in the Saudi Arabian capital. However, Ronaldo's participation in the match at the Kingdom Arena is in doubt after suffering a recent calf injury.

Other notable winners at the 2023 Globe Soccer Awards included Haaland, who took home the Best Men's Player of the Year Award, whilst Aitana Bonmati won the Best Women's Player of the Year trophy.

Additionally, Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola was recognised as the Best Coach and Manchester City were named Best Men's Club.