Barcelona ace Lionel Messi has waved away claims Manchester United rival Cristiano Ronaldo is the best player in the world.

"Cristiano is a great player," said Messi nonchalantly, when quizzed. The best in the world? Messi just returned an impudent smile. "Very good," he replied.

"He's shown that this season, not least in the amount of goals he scored. But it's not a contest between Cristiano and me, it's between two great teams. United are very good, with great players and will be difficult to knock out."