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Cristiano Ronaldo

Ronaldo physicality favoured by Sansone over Messi magic

19:08 GMT+3 08/05/2018
Cristiano Ronaldo Real Madrid Lionel Messi Barcelona
The Villarreal forward has crossed paths with the Real Madrid and Barcelona superstars in La Liga, with the Portuguese getting his vote as the best

Cristiano Ronaldo has earned another supporter in his long-running battle with Lionel Messi, with Nicola Sansone favouring the Real Madrid star's physicality over the Barca man's trickery.

Two superstar performers of the modern era have been locked in a decade-long tussle for supremacy at the top of the global game – with 10 Ballons d’Or shared between them.

Picking fault and favour between the pair has become standard practice, with various opinions having been offered down the years by those who have witnessed their particular brand of magic.

Villarreal forward Sansone is the latest to be quizzed on their respective merits, with the Italy international having crossed passed with both during his two seasons in La Liga.

He told Goal when asked to pick his favourite: “Messi or Ronaldo? Messi impressed me more live, but I prefer CR7 because he also has a physical domination.”

Sansone is set to get another close look at two iconic figures over the coming weeks, with Villarreal set to face Barcelona on Wednesday and Real Madrid on the final day of the 2017-18 campaign.

It could be that those outings are the 26-year-old’s last against Messi and Ronaldo, with a man who has taken in just 18 appearances this season acknowledging that he may soon be on the move.

“​At Villarreal I don't play many matches, so during the summer I could change teams,” Sansone said.

Born in Munich and nurtured through the academy system at Bayern, Sansone has spent much of his senior career in Italy at Parma, Crotone and Sassuolo.

It could be that he heads back to Serie A when the transfer window re-opens, with interest having already been shown in by leading sides in Italy.

He added: "In January Napoli wanted me on loan, but unfortunately the transfer wasn't made."

Other avenues may, however, present themselves to Sansone, with it possible that he could follow former Villarreal team-mate Cedric Bakambu to Asia.

"Bakambu in China? I would go there too because the footballer's career doesn't last long," he said.