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Rio de Janeiro, Nov 20: Cristiano Ronaldo deserves to win the FIFA Ballon d’Or award for the third time, according to Brazil legend Ronaldo. The 29-year-old forward led Real Madrid to their 10th Champions League title in May and has already scored 18 goals from 10 La Liga matches this season. Also Read - PSG Star Neymar Snubs Lionel Messi And Barcelona For More Money: Report

“I think Cristiano Ronaldo is going to win again. He is playing very well and he still scores a lot of goals,” Ronaldo, who was the recipient of the award in 1997 & 2002 said. Among the Portugal striker’s rivals for the award is Argentina’s four-time winner Lionel Messi, who won the Golden Ball for the best player at this year’s World Cup. Also Read - Manchester City Preparing £15m Bid to Sign Lionel Messi During January Transfer Window: Report

Despite the accolade in Brazil, Messi has failed to reach the heights of previous years for his club Barcelona.

“I think Messi has been very good but not so fantastic as other years,” Ronaldo said, adding that Brazil star Neymar can finish in the top three. The three finalists for the award will be announced Dec 1 and the winner will be named Jan 12.