Manchester United star Rio Ferdinand has backed former teammate Cristiano Ronaldo to win this year's Ballon d'Or.
Ronaldo, who has scored an outstanding 36 goals in 26 games for club and country this season, is the odds-on favourite to be named FIFA's World Player of the Year.
The 28-year-old forward is up against Barcelona superstar Lionel Messi and Bayern Munich winger Franck Ribery.
Ronaldo last won the Ballon d'Or in 2008 when he was plying his trade at Manchester United alongside Ferdinand.
The Portuguese star's arch-rival Messi has been crowned the World's Player of the Year for the past four years,however Ferdinand believes Ronaldo may finally end Messi's dominance by winning this year's prestigious title.
Speaking to the Daily Mirror, Ferdinand said on Ronaldo:
“We had a debate about it in training, and I think he has been the best in the calendar year, definitely, he’s the best.
“Look at his goals! He’s scored more goals than some clubs have in the calendar year.
“He is a great model to any young player to look up to. He got to being World Player of the Year back in 2008 and he wasn’t satisfied.
"Ronaldo has gone on again to another level and he should have won it a couple of seasons ago when Real Madrid won La Liga.
“He wants to become the best player in the world again.
"He’s still got people doubting him - maybe there’s a jealousy element to it - and he wants to prove them people wrong. That’s how you become the best.”
Ferdinand also revealed that he tried to lure Ronaldo back to Old Trafford before the Portuguese international signed a new five-year contract at Real Madrid.