The 30-year-old admits this could be his last big chance to clinch the award, while revealing his belief that the Argentine is the game’s greatest player on top form
Bayern Munich star Franck Ribery believes it is “now or never” for him to win the Ballon d’Or, but says Lionel Messi is the best player in the world regardless of who lifts the trophy.
The France international is vying with Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo for football’s top individual prize, with the winner set to be crowned at the Ballon d’Or gala on Monday.
“Messi and Ronaldo are two great players who score a great amount of goals, but let’s not compare our stats. Our styles are different,” he told L’Equipe.
“I’ve done everything, I avoided injuries and I’ve given regular performances. Ronaldo scores a lot of goals, but Messi is always the best player in the world, though he experienced some injuries this year.”
Ribery, who led Bayern to Bundesliga, DFB-Pokal, Champions League and Club World Cup glory in 2013, insists he could not have done more to earn the prize and admits this could be his last chance to win.
“I’ve done everything. It’s hard to give more. I’ve played all the games, won all the trophies and I’ve been decisive,” he added.
“I’m confident, I have every chance. It’s now or never, I’m 30.
“If I win it, my thoughts will go to my wife and father. They were always behind me, even when things were tough. [But] I’m fine, I don’t always think of the Ballon d’Or, I don’t need sleeping pills.
“For me, the Ballon d’Or would be a revenge for all I’ve endured. Something extraordinary. If I don’t win it? Life will continue, even if it would be a great deception. I won’t stop my career. It’s quite the opposite. I want to have fun with Bayern and win everything again. I also want to have a good World Cup with France.”
Ribery has scored six times in 13 games this season as he looks to replicate his form for Bayern last season under Pep Guardiola.