As we have almost approached time for El Clasico between Barcelona and Real Madrid, much focus has centered around the Ronaldo vs. Messi duel again.
In the past, Ronaldo has been egotistical. In 2008, he said he was the "first, second, and third best player in the world." Even though Ronaldo is my favorite player, I have never liked his egotistical attitude. It's okay to be confident, but the ego that he displayed in the past was too much.
However, Ronaldo, through the years has matured into a more selfless player. At Real Madrid he is much more of a team player than he was at Manchester.
And finally, even though his current form is truly fantastic, he admits that he currently is not the best player in the world.
In a recent press conference, Ronaldo replied to the question of who is the better player between Ronaldo and Messi in the following manner:
"The biggest is me, at least in height and wider, too, that's for sure. I think Messi is having a phenomenal season, he is scoring and making a lot of goals. He is certainly among the best now and will always be.
I'm doing a good job. This is my first year in Spain and I am very happy. I want to keep improving in the years that I will stay here, and hopefully I will be one of the best, too."
Clearly, as shown in this quote, Ronaldo thinks that Messi is the best player in the world, which is definitely a true statement; he also says that Messi will always be among the best.
Ronaldo himself says that he wants to be one of the best, suggesting that he thinks that he still has a way to go before he can be mentioned among the best (which, according to him, includes Messi).
Ronaldo also says that he will not only try to score for his team against Barca, but also assist, or anything that will help Los Blancos win against last season's champions.
Ronaldo is finally maturing into a more selfless player; he is finally giving others the respect they deserve, and finally growing into more of a team player—while still having great confidence and a winner's mentality.
This winner's mentality plus growing humility may just be some of the most important things that will carry him to be as great as Messi and the rest of the best.