Lionel Messi has sent Cristiano Ronaldo and his rivals a fiery warning after being crowned the 2019 Ballon d’Or winner for a record sixth time.
Messi claimed the enviable individual award ahead of Liverpool’s Virgil van Dijk and arch-rival Ronaldo both who finished second and third respectively.
The triumph in Paris, France, on Monday night, December 2, now takes Messi one ahead of Ronaldo, leaving the Barcelona superstar the outright record-breaker.
The pair has won the prize 11 times between them in the last decade, with only Real Madrid playmaker Luka Modric breaking the duopoly in 2018.
But having reclaimed his position on the football global stage, Messi has pointed out he has no intention of giving up in quest for more honours.
“I am already focused on the future. This gives me great pride, it gives me a lot of strength to continue my work,” the Barca skipper said after being presented with the Ballon d’Or.
“I hope I have more years to enjoy, although I am aware of how old I am, everything happens very quickly and I know that the moment of withdrawal (retirement) is approaching,” he continued.
The Argentine talisman has already found the back of the net nine times this season in the La Liga to sit second in the top scorers chart behind Karim Benzema.