We’re not entirely sure what to make of this developing feud between Cristiano Ronaldo and Xavi.
Spats between footballers are always interesting to follow - just look at Jamie Carragher vs. Mario Balotelli - but seeing Ronaldo and Xavi go at it is just a little weird. For a start, Xavi is currently plying his trade in Qatar, so we can’t look ahead to an El Clasico meeting between the pair.
Regardless, people are already choosing sides after Ronaldo mocked the Barcelona legend for failing to win a Ballon d’Or. If you support Real Madrid you’re on Ronaldo’s side; if you follow Blaugrana, you’re backing Xavi.
Needless to say, Catalan newspaper Sport are firmly on team Xavi. This is a media outlet that constantly attempts to portray Los Blancos as a club on the brink of disaster - earlier in the month they said the Madrid dressing room is close to ‘mutiny’ over Gareth Bale’s reported contract demands.
And their journalist Francesc J. Gimeno isn’t happy with Ronaldo for mocking Xavi for failing to win the Ballon d’Or. “He’s won everything but he’s never won a Ballon d’Or - I have three,” Ronaldo said after Madrid’s 5-2 win against Osasuna.
Xavi vs. Ronaldo
The feud started when Xavi suggested that the only people who believe Ronaldo is better than Lionel Messi are Real Madrid supporters. Quite why Ronaldo got upset is anyone’s guess - Xavi will always side with his former teammate in the Messi vs. Ronaldo argument.
Ronaldo’s furious reaction might just see him come out worse from this. Gimeno has picked up on the 31-year-old’s recent admission that the Ballon d’Or isn’t an obsession, when it’s the one argument he uses to undermine Xavi.
“Individual awards are always won without expectations, they are not everything,” Ronaldo said. “I’m not obsessed about whether I have a chance to win the Ballon d'Or.”
Gimeno, then, believes Ronaldo has revealed himself to be a hypocrite.
“He is someone who only cares about fattening his individual honours,” the journalist wrote in a scathing assessment. “It’s clear that he believes the team is there to boost his personal brilliance. Ronaldo’s been shown to be a hypocrite. He is obsessed with knocking Messi off the throne. The Ballon d’Or is his only target.”