"If I could, I'd vote for myself. I am what I am, and I'm happy with that. Being too humble isn't good. In Portugal we say that too much humility is vanity."
Cristiano Ronaldo responds to being asked who he will vote for to win the FIFA Ballon d’Or
"Ronaldo was my hero. I loved watching players like 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."
Lionel Messi names O Fenômeno as his childhood idol
"We all know it is between two, the two monsters that are Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo. You do not realise but they have revolutionised the statistics. Before them it was a feat to score 30 goals a season in a major championship. For several years now they have scored over 40. They are phenomenal."
Didier Drogba on who should win the FIFA Ballon d’Or
"I’ve always been a fan of Zidane. My bedroom was plastered with posters of him. There was something especially classy about him. He never seemed that quick yet he was always first on the ball because he was always at the right place at the right time. But what fascinated me the most about him was his touch – it was so fluid and aerial. That’s what made him stand out – he had great elasticity. I can still remember how he once brought the ball down for Real Madrid. There was a cross-field pass that was impossible to control – one where you tell yourself there is no point even trying to get it – but he somehow got his foot two metres in the air and controlled it. The touch was just perfect, as if the ball just deposited itself gently on his foot. He defied gravity."
"Definitely, there's no doubt about that. Gary became absolutely fantastic, probably the best right-back the club has ever had. But Rafael is definitely the more naturally talented. He's a Brazilian who trains like a beast. The boy is just a football fanatic. When he goes home in the summer, he plays every day for his street team back in Brazil!"
Sir Alex Ferguson on whether Rafael can become a better full-back than Gary Neville
"I always wanted to be either a bullfighter or footballer, but my mother was a little scared of me becoming a bullfighter. So I opted for football, which was less dangerous."
"It was exceptional, to score a goal like that. The way he brought the ball down, everything about it was amazing. It was amazing to watch it. I'm a Manchester United fan, and I don't like to say that about Liverpool players, but all jokes aside his first touch was incredible, his second touch was even better and it was an amazing finish. He's a great player, he's capable of doing those things week in and week out."
David Beckham on Luis Suarez’s goal against Newcastle United
"He would not just get in any national team in the world, but any club team too. He has so many great qualities. He is flexible. He can play at the English pace or he can associate with the ball very well. He is a very intelligent player. He is so inspirational. In the key moments he has that something different, that spark that it is difficult to define. He'll absolutely be remembered as one of the greats. For me he is already one of the greats."
Xabi Alonso on Steven Gerrard