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Barcelona legend Maradona: Messi ahead of Real Madrid's Ronaldo

Barcelona legend Diego Maradona rates Lionel Messi ahead of Real Madrid star Cristiano Ronaldo.

Maradona also revealed his admiration for AC Milan striker Mario Balotelli.

"I'd put Leo Messi first, then Cristiano Ronaldo, Neymar and Mario Balotelli. The difference between Cristiano and Messi is how the Real Madrid man hits the ball, whereas Messi has extraordinary footwork.

"Balotelli needs to be seen as a player and I'm sure I could help him grow as a person. He went to school with my daughter when he was at Manchester City, so I got to know him. He sent me a photograph of himself with a cigar. He needs to be left alone, as everyone has a right to live the way they want to."

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