Virgil van Dijk was crowned the UEFA Men's Player of the Season on Thursday evening in Monaco.
The Liverpool centre-back enjoyed a stunning 2018/19 campaign, winning the Champions League with the Reds.
He was also instrumental in guiding Jurgen Klopp's side to a second-place finish in the Premier League as they narrowly missed out on the title to Manchester City.
The two superstars of football have dominated the sport for the last 10 years and were at their imperious best once again in 2018/19.
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But Van Dijk has simply been that good and the Liverpool star is also the odds-on favourite to win the Ballon d'Or.
However, Manchester United legend Rio Ferdinand - a Rolls-Royce centre-half himself - doesn't believe Van Dijk should have won the UEFA award.
Ferdinand says: “There’s no doubt in my mind Virgil van Dijk is the best defender on the planet today
“But when a man scores 50 goals in a season like Messi or when Cristiano wins three trophies in a season, you can’t look beyond that."
You'd think Ferdinand would want to support his fellow defender, but he has always been vocal in his adoration for both Messi and Ronaldo.
He also believes that Ronaldo - his former United teammate - should be awarded the Ballon d'Or for 2019.
The Englishman cites the 34-year-old's adaptation to Serie A and success on the international stage with Portugal as the reasons behind his opinion.
When asked by Jake Humphrey, fellow pundit Joe Cole stated that Messi should win the award, while Martin Keown sided with Van Dijk.News Now - Sport News