Ajax forward Justin Kluivert has admitted that he is a huge admirer of Lionel Messi despite considering Cristiano Ronaldo as one of his role models. In an interview with Goal.com, Kluivert praised the work on Ronaldo on and off the pitch, but believes Messi is presently the world number one.
Kluivert has only recently progressed into the Ajax senior team, but his early potential appears to have already caught the eye of the likes of Manchester United and Barcelona. Irrespective of this, the forward has been urged to stay at Ajax by Netherlands coach Ronald Koeman in order to earn more gametime during the development phase of his career.
Meanwhile, Messi and Ronaldo have gone through different types of seasons with Barcelona and Real Madrid respectively and the former is on course to celebrate yet another league title. Despite this, there will be a sense of disappointment for the Argentine with the Blaugrana having suffered a shock defeat to AS Roma in the quarter-final stage of the Champions League.
With the Catalans out of the mix, Real Madrid are once again favourites to lift the crown for the third straight season, and this would supposedly put Ronaldo in pole position for another Ballon d’Or title. Both Messi and Ronaldo have won the prestigious accolade on five occasions, and this year’s award could be decided on how they progress with their respective nations at the summer World Cup.