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The former Barcelona star thinks that the Argentine is peerless, and sympathises with Real Madrid star Cristiano Ronaldo for having to compete with him for awards

Patrick Kluivert says that he believes Lionel Messi is not only the best footballer on the planet at present, but the greatest player of all time.

The Ballon d'Or is just around the corner and the Argentine is the heavy favourite having smashed Gerd Muller's record for goals scored in a calendar year in December.

The retired Netherlands striker, who spent nearly six years at Camp Nou, believes that Messi is completely peerless and sympathised with Real Madrid star Cristiano Ronaldo for having to compete with such a player for awards.

"Cristiano Ronaldo is very good, but he has the misfortune to have his career coincide with Leo Messi's," he told Mundo Deportivo.

"Is Messi the best player of all time? For me, yes."

Andres Iniesta, Ronaldo and Messi will go head-to-head for the coveted Ballon d'Or award at the start of 2013.

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