Giorgio Chiellini claims Juventus teammate Cristiano Ronaldo “was robbed of the Ballon d’Or last year, as Real Madrid wanted to stop him winning.”
The trophy went to Real Madrid and Croatia midfielder Luka Modric in 2018, while this evening the winner was Barcelona star Lionel Messi.
Ronaldo skipped the ceremony for two years running after learning he would not be holding the golden globe aloft.
Asked about the decisions, Chiellini made some remarkable comments on Sky Sport Italia.
“Ronaldo was really robbed of the Ballon d'Or last season, when Real Madrid decided to make sure he couldn't win it and that was really weird,” said the defender.
“This season, it was more balanced. With all due respect, Modric even in his best season of his career didn't deserve it. That was a signal from Real Madrid, as they wanted to stop Ronaldo winning it.
“He won the Champions League, but by that logic, (Liverpool defender Virgil) Van Dijk should've won it this year, or last year (Antoine) Griezmann, (Paul) Pogba or (Kylian) Mbappe for doing extraordinary things at the World Cup. Modric made no sense.”
Cristiano Ronaldo won the Ballon d’Or on five occasions, while Messi now has six.