Barcelona star Lionel Messi revealed he knew he would not win the Ballon d’Or this year.
Messi, 31, surprisingly finished fifth for the award, which was won by Real Madrid and Croatia midfielder Luka Modric.
The superstar, who has 15 goals and 10 assists in 15 LaLiga games this season, said he knew he would miss out on a record sixth Ballon d’Or.
“I heard the nominees for the Ballon d’Or and I knew I would not be in the fight,” Messi told Marca.
Messi is dominating LaLiga once again, although rival Cristiano Ronaldo has left Real Madrid for Juventus.
The Argentina international said he enjoyed his battle with Ronaldo while the forward was in Spain.
“The rivalry with Cristiano was very healthy and very beautiful for the spectators,” Messi said.