“He wasn’t that type of guy” – Gerard Pique reveals winning the Ballon d’Or wasn’t Lionel Messi’s priority

“He wasn’t that type of guy” – Gerard Pique reveals winning the Ballon d’Or wasn’t Lionel Messi’s priority

Over the years, several players have won the Ballon d’Or but few have managed to have the impact on the award that Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo has had. The duo have lifted football’s biggest individual prize a combined thirteen times which is as much as Michel Platini, Johan Cruyff, Marco van Basten, Franz Beckenbauer, Zinedine Zidane and Eusebio have managed in total. It shows the impact the two La Liga legends have had on the game, especially in Spain.

The duo have combined to win nineteen league titles with an incredible 14 of those coming during their time in Spain. Not only that, their goal-scoring record speak volumes as Ronaldo is Real Madrid’s all-time record goal-scorer while Messi is the same for Barcelona and La Liga. However, Ronaldo only moved to a center-forward role after his switch to Real Madrid which does account for his prolific nature in front of goal.

Gerard Pique admits that Lionel Messi was very team-focused

Yet, his place on the right-wing never stopped Lionel Messi from scoring at an equally, if not more, prolific rate as he still holds the record for most goals in a single year. However, despite that record, Gerard Pique has admitted that the Argentine’s focus was never goals or individual prizes.

Instead, Pique revealed that Messi was very team-focused and only concentrated on doing the best for the club. The defender also added that the now 36-year-old had the bonus of performing exceptionally and winning various individual prizes over the course of his career.

“He (Lionel Messi) wasn’t that type of guy. He was very team-focused even though he was getting front page headlines in the newspapers. He was very close with all of us and just focused on winning titles like the Champions League. He was the best and he was winning the Ballon d’Or. It wasn’t something that was a priority for him,” Pique told talkSPORT.

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Cristiano Ronaldo wanted to be the best and thus became a pure No.9

The former Manchester United star also played alongside Cristiano Ronaldo during the Portuguese legend’s first spell at the club. So much so, that Pique revealed that the forward was still growing as a player and only truly hit his peak as a goal-scoring forward after his move to Real Madrid. Pique also added that Ronaldo wanted to be the best at Madrid and realised he could only do that as a No.9.

“He started as a winger at Manchester United, he was very skillfull then when he moved to Madrid he started to become a goalscorer, like a pure No.9. At Manchester United when I played with him, he loved to do tricks and he was very skillfull. But I assumed that he realised that at Real Madrid, if you want to be the best, you have to score a lot of goals,” Pique added.