London: Barcelona striker Lionel Messi has revealed that Brazilian star Ronaldo Luis Nazario de Lima was one of his heroes, and not his Portuguese rival Cristiano Ronaldo.
“Ronaldo was my hero. I loved watching players like (Zinedine) Zidane, Ronaldinho and Rivaldo but Ronaldo was the best striker I’ve ever seen,” Sport24 quoted Messi, as saying, as he referred to De Lima, and not Real Madrid``s Cristiano, with whom he is vying for the Ballon d``Or.
"I loved watching players like (Zinedine) Zidane, Ronaldinho and Rivaldo but Ronaldo was the best striker I’ve ever seen. He was so fast he could score from nothing, and could shoot the ball better than anyone I’ve ever seen,” he added.
Messi, 25, is tipped to pick up the Ballon d``Or award for the world’s best footballer. Like Ronaldo, who also played at Barcelona, and France legend Zidane, the Barca player has won the prestigious accolade three times before, the report said.