Barcelona ace Lionel Messi has insisted that the idea that he and Real Madrid forward Cristiano Ronaldo compete directly with each other is incorrect.
The pair have rewritten the record books both in Spain and in Europe while dominating the Ballon d'Or award – since 2008 either Messi or Ronaldo has won the award, with the other finishing as runner-up in the voting in all but one occasion.
As was the case earlier this week when the nominations for the 2015 Ballon d'Or were announced, comparisons between the pair are drawn with great regularity as fans and the media debate who is the better player.
However, Messi has said that he is only focused on doing well for Barcelona and Argentina, not on what Ronaldo is doing, and he believes the Portugal international feels the same.
"These are things that people say. I don't compete with Cristiano and I suppose he would not compete with me," he said in an interview on yahoo.com.
"What I want is the very best for my teams, and that's what I am working for."
Messi is currently sidelined by a knee injury suffered against Las Palmas last month, and he has revealed that being confined to the sidelines, much to his frustration.
"Being injured is the worst feeling in the world for a sportsman," said the Argentine, "but right from the start, I accepted that I had an injury and that the only thing to do was to recover from it the best way possible.
"The most important thing for me is to be at 100% fitness. I am improving every day without setting myself any targets.
"I have always said that I don't set myself any dates because it isn't up to me. As much as I would like to play tomorrow, the doctors wouldn't let me."
Messi has been linked with a move away from Barca due to his continued problems with the Spanish tax authorities, but the 28-year-old has said he has no plans to leave the club at this stage.
"I don’t want to look too far ahead," he explained. "I live for the moment and at this moment I am with Barcelona in La Liga where I have made my living and where I live very well."