Roberto Carlos: Cristiano is still the world’s best

Roberto Carlos has no doubt that Cristiano Ronaldo deserves to be crowned The Best FIFA Men’s Player for 2016. The 31-year-old is one of three players in the running for the award, along with long-time rival Lionel Messi and Antoine Griezmann. Ronaldo helped Real Madrid lift the UEFA Champions League trophy and Portugal win the UEFA EURO this year.

"Talking about Cristiano is very easy,” said the 125-times-capped former Brazil wingback. “He is the best in the world. A truly great player, and everyone keeps saying he continues scoring the most important goals of his career. Cristiano is the best in the world – still.

"Cristiano, for last season and everything he has done this season, already deserves to have won. For everything he represents and everything that he is doing for Spanish football and Real Madrid, I think he will win. He is a sensational player.

"He is consistent and a team player from another level. I think that Cristiano, over the last few years, has been considered, not just by ex-players, managers people across the world, to be one of the best players of all time."

Roberto Carlos finished runner-up to compatriot Ronaldo in the FIFA World Player of the Year running in 1997. The 43-year-old spent 11 years at Real until 2007 – two years before Ronaldo joined the club.

“I would have loved to have played with Ronaldo and Neymar at Madrid,” he said in 2014.

The Best FIFA Men’s Player will be crowned at The Best FIFA Football Awards™ ceremony in Zurich on 9 January 2017.