When Pele announced Cristiano Ronaldo as the winner of the 2013 FIFA Ballon d’Or, the Portuguese ace gave his girlfriend a kiss and stepped up to the stage at Zurich’s Kongresshaus, where he tearfully took receipt of the award from the Brazilian legend. FIFA.com brings you some of the tributes the Real Madrid and Portugal player duly received from the football world.
“I would like to congratulate Cristiano because he was a worthy winner. I don’t have anything else to say. It was a great year for all three of us (Ronaldo, Messi and Franck Ribery) and that’s why we’re here. I don’t have any complaints or any apologies to make either.”
“Every player knows how difficult it is to win awards, especially one as big as this. I was rooting for Messi, but they made a good decision. He’s an idol of mine too. Congratulations to Ronaldo."
“I’m immensely satisfied because justice has been done to the extraordinary year of an extraordinary player who has so much talent. That’s the only way you can win an award like this. As a Portuguese person and the national team coach, I am very happy. He is a genuine person and he got emotional, which is only natural.”
“I think it’s really deserved, not just for this year but for all the work Cristiano Ronaldo has done for so many years. He’s worked hard to get better year after year. He’s just amazing.”
Luiz Felipe Scolari
“He is the first Portuguese to receive this honour twice. This award comes as recognition for his exceptional level of performance and for the drive and dedication he has shown throughout his career as a footballer. He wears the national colours and the pride of Portugal around the world,”
Anibal Cavaco Silva, Portugal President
“I am very happy. We should all feel very proud that Ronaldo was the best player in the world last year,”
Fernando Santos, Greece's Portuguese coach
“Ronaldo turned in some fantastic performances for Real Madrid and the national team in 2013. He went through some anxious times, which explains why he struggled to keep it all in. We feel proud as Portuguese people to see one of our players win the Ballon d’Or. He deserves it for everything he did in 2013."
Fernando Gomes, Portuguese Football Federation chairman
“All I’m going to say is that Cristiano Ronaldo’s Ballon d’Or is richly deserved. It is recognition for his hard work, talent and will to win."
Florentino Perez, Real Madrid President
“I’m disappointed for Ribery, but I know that Ronaldo is a deserving winner of the FIFA Ballon d’Or."
Michel Platini, UEFA President
“You have to know how to win and how to lose. Today is Cristiano’s day and you have to congratulate him."