Messi has 'already won Ballon d'Or' even if he fails to win Champions League, says Barcelona legend RivaldoApril 20, 2019
BARCELONA legend Rivaldo claims Lionel Messi has already earned his sixth Ballon d'Or trophy.
The Argentine maestro has not won the award since 2015 after years of dominance of Cristiano Ronaldo and Luka Modric's victory last year.
Messi, 31, who finished fifth in the Ballon d'Or ballot last year, has been in sublime form this season – leading the Catalan giants towards winning the Treble.
Barcelona are in the driving seat for the La Liga crown, will face Valencia in the Copa del Rey final and square off with Liverpool in the Champions League semi-finals
The Argentine forward has played a vital part in Barca's strong run, scoring 45 goals and adding 21 assists in 42 games.
And Rivaldo, 47, claims his performances this season are already worthy of the award, even if the La Liga giants stumble in the Champions League.
Even if he doesn't win the Champions League, however, he already deserves the Ballon d'Or
He told Goal: “It's impossible to describe Messi.
"I like him so much and I always say I feel so sad because he never won the World Cup with Argentina.
"It is an award he deserves because a world-class player like him must be a world champion.
"He has been scoring goals, giving assists and being the top scorer in La Liga for a long time and I think what he has been doing in the Champions League means his merits should be recognised.
"He had a chance to score a bicycle kick [versus Man Utd] but it's not an easy one to take because you don't get those chances often in games. It was a good effort but it didn't quite come off.
"Even if he doesn't win the Champions League, however, he already deserves the Ballon d'Or."
Messi has almost single-handedly set Barcelona up for the Liverpool tie.
He scored a double and notched two assists against Lyon in the crunch round of eight game after a goalless draw in the first leg.
And he made sure Manchester United didn't stand a chance of pulling off a PSG-esque comeback in the quarter-finals after Barca left Old Trafford with a slender one-goal advantage.
Messi led the dismantling of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's men at Nou Camp, netting twice within 20 minutes before Philippe Coutinho settled the result at 3-0.
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