The midfielder does not see why the Portuguese forward should be crowned the best player in the world given his failure to lead his country out of the group stage of Brazil 2014
Xavi has questioned Cristiano Ronaldo’s status as the favourite to win the Ballon d’Or, pointing out that the Portuguese “did not do much at the World Cup”.
The Portuguese win the award for 2013 and is widely expected to retain his title after a year in which he fired Real Madrid to Champions League glory and played a key role in the Spanish side’s remarkable run of 23 victories in all competitions.
However, Xavi does not believe that the 29-year-old would be worthy winner, given a Ronaldo-led Portugal suffered a dismal first-round elimination at Brazil 2014, while Ballon d’Or rivals Manuel Neuer and Lionel Messi both featured in the final, for Germany and Argentina, respectively.
“He didn’t do much in the World Cup, and in a World Cup year, the season is defined by that,” the former Spain international told SPORT.
Xavi also dismissed reports that Lionel Messi is unsettled at Barcelona, with the Argentine having caused panic in Catalunya by stating in November that he might not stay at Camp Nou.
“He is happier than ever,” the veteran midfielder stated.
Meanwhile, Xavi gave Luis Suarez a major vote of confidence, revealing that the Uruguayan striker reminds him of former Barca striker Samuel Eto’o because of “his bad temper, character and persistence”.
Suarez had struggled for goals after making his competitive debut on October 25, against Real Madrid, but he broke his Liga duck in Saturday’s 5-0 win over Cordoba.