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Ronaldo's sister slams Van Dijk Ballon d'Or jibe

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Cristiano Ronaldo's sister failed to see the funny side after Liverpool defender Virgil van Dijk joked that the Portuguese forward was not really a rival in the Ballon d'Or award voting.

Dutchman Van Dijk finished second behind Lionel Messi in Monday's ceremony in Paris -- the latest in a plethora of football awards -- with Ronaldo third.

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Acho que há pessoas a viver completamente frustradas!!! E fora da realidade... A tal humildade! Repórter: "Cristiano Ronaldo não estará cá esta noite. É menos um rival a ter em conta." Van Dijk: " É Cristiano Ronaldo realmente um rival?" Foi esta a resposta do central holandês do Liverpool, quando confrontado sobre a ausência do astro português da gala desta noite. É certo e sabido que Ronaldo não ganhará o prémio desta noite. Apesar de ter vencido importantes títulos colectivos...mas isso é outra conversa e que lá na frente iremos ver onde vai chegar a verdade sobre o futebol !!! Agora, caro Virgil, para onde tu vais, Cristiano Ronaldo já foi e já veio mil vezes . Vê lá bem, meu caro Virgil, que o Cristiano Ronaldo foi tri-campeão no país onde tu já jogas há anos e ainda não conseguiste meter a mão na "lata". O Cristiano Ronaldo até foi o melhor jogador e melhor marcador no país onde jogas Virgil. Por sinal, era até bem mais jovem que tu. Depois, caro Virgil, o Cristiano Ronaldo foi para outras paragens e tornou-se no maior jogador da história de um clubezito. Real Madrid, diz-te algo Virgil? É possível que sim, porque esse clube, com esse tal Cristiano até te derrotaram na final de uma tal de Champions League. Dessas, já o Ronaldo tem 5, Virgil. E esse tal Ronaldo e companheiros, com as quinas ao peito, esmagaram a tua "laranja" numa final. Foi duro, Virgil? Temos pena. E, caro Virgil, numa das épocas menos conseguidas da sua carreira, o Cristiano Ronaldo ainda venceu mais títulos que tu. Impressionante, não é? Agora, Virgil, vai vencer títulos daqueles que realmente contam e depois falamos. Quando tiveres uma mão cheia deles, dos realmente importantes, talvez te possas sentar à mesa com o Cristiano. Ou como se diz na nossa terra, cresce e aparece! E para mim @cristiano és e serás para sempre o melhor jogador do mundo!!! E quem não gosta que ponha na roda do prato !!!😂❤️❤️❤️( como se diz na nossa terra ,pequenina para muitos ) mas de onde saiu o melhor de todos os tempos...#assinoembaixoluisfaria #cr7n1 #Eotrabalhocontinua #respostastánahistoriaenomuseu #orgulhodomeurei #Deusnocomando

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Ronaldo was absent from the presentation for the prize he has won five times, preferring to go to Milan where he was voted Serie A's Player of the Year.

Asked by a Dutch reporter about Ronaldo's absence, Van Dijk jokingly replied: "Why, was he a candidate?", provoking an Instagram tirade from Ronaldo's sister, Katia Aveiro.

"Dear Virgil, from where you are now, Ronaldo has come and gone one thousand times," she said.

"Cristiano was three-times league champion in that country where you have played for years and still haven't put your hands on 'the tin,'" she said, referring to her brother's Premier League titles with Manchester United.

After listing more Ronaldo achievements with Real Madrid, she said: "Now, Virgil, go and win some of those titles that really matter and we will talk again. When you have a hand full of them, maybe you can sit at the same table as Cristiano."

Van Dijk later on Monday said that his comments were made as a joke and said he had nothing but respect for Ronaldo and Messi. And on Tuesday, the Liverpool star posted a long message on social media in which he included that he was "honoured" to be nominated with the two superstars.

Van Dijk's coach Jurgen Klopp, however, said the defender deserved to win the award, though he had no issues with the final results.

"The last season, if you really go for only that season, then I cannot remember a more impressive season for a defender ever, honestly," said the German about Van Dijk.

"So it would have been right as well if Virgil would have won it."

Ronaldo netted 21 Serie A league goals last season to help Juventus win an eighth successive Serie A title.

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Luka Modric, who ended Messi's and Ronaldo's 10-year grip on the award last year, was also asked about Ronaldo's absence from Monday's ceremony in Paris. Modric, Ronaldo's former teammate at Real Madrid, presented this year's award to Messi.

"The first question and it is already controversial," Modric told the reporter. "I only talk about myself. I am happy to be here and I believe that football is about respect. When you don't win, out of respect, you have to be here because it's a celebration of football one night like that of today. That's why I'm here to show respect. It's very simple."

Juventus captain Giorgio Chiellini, however, defended his teammate's absence in Paris, and also said that "It's OK that Messi has won the Ballon d'Or this year."

Chiellini, however, blasted France Football for the 2018 decision to pick Modric over Ronaldo.

"Ronaldo was really robbed of the Ballon d'Or last season, when Real Madrid decided to make sure he couldn't win it and that was really strange," he told Sky Sport Italia.

"This season, it was more balanced. With all due respect, Modric even in his best season of his career didn't deserve it. That was a signal from Real Madrid, as they wanted to stop Ronaldo winning it."

Information from Reuters was used in this report.