By ESPNSTAR.com staff
Both Ronaldo and Messi, along with Spanish international Andres Iniesta, have made the shortlist for the FIFA Ballon d'Or, an award given to the player who is considered to have performed the best in the previous season.
Messi's sensational performances for the Blaugrana have made him hot favourite to win the award; the 25-year-old recently scored his 90th goal for the calendar year, breaking the previous record of 85 goals scored set by Gerd Muller in 1972, and his goals have helped fire the Catalan giants to currently top the La Liga standings.
However, Ronaldo too has been in fantastic form for his club Real Madrid, helping them to win the La Liga title last season in record breaking fashion, scoring an amazing 46 league goals in the process.
While the debate over which player is better continues to rage on, Ferguson believes that though popular opinion views Messi as the best footballer in the world, Ronaldo, who played under the Scottish manager from 2003-2009, is equally good and deserves to win the Ballon d'Or just as much as the Argentinian.
"There is nothing between the two of them, they are both the best players in the world," Ferguson was quoted as saying by the Sun.
"There will always be great players. You can go back to the 60s with Alfredo Di Stefano, Ferenc Puskas and Eusebio.
"Going into the 70s you had Johan Cruyff and Franz Beckenbauer and then in the 80s Marco van Basten.
"I think what we are seeing at the moment is that Messi is an exceptional player from this decade, along with Cristiano.
"I don't think the rivalry against each other bothers them.
"I think they have their own personal pride in terms of wanting to be the best and I certainly know that about Cristiano because he played here at United for six years."
Both Ronaldo and Messi will be in action for their clubs on Saturday, with Barcelona taking on Real Valladolid, and Real taking on Malaga.