New Delhi: Real Madrid's talismanic striker Cristiano Ronaldo has won the prestigious Ballon d`Or on Monday for the fourth time.
The 31-year-old Portuguese, who won the Champions League with Real and European Championships with Portugal in recent months, inherits the title of the best player in the world from his long-time Barcelona rival Lionel Messi.
Ronaldo won the prestigious gong in 2008, 2013 and 2014.
"This has been the best year of my career from both a team and individual level," Ronaldo said in an interview recorded earlier at the Santiago Bernabeu. "To win the title for Portugal was what was left to achieve on my resume and it was one of the most important moments."
"But to win Champions League as well with Real Madrid was huge," he said, surrounded by the 11 trophies the team has won in Europe`s elite club competition.
"This is a dream come true and it is the fourth time. I feel very proud. This win is for my teammates in both the club and the national team. It is incredible to earn this trophy again," Ronaldo said.
The Ballon d'Or is given to the best Europe-based player as voted by 173 journalists from around the world. The ceremony is slated to take place on January 9, 2017.
(With Agency inputs)