Cristiano Ronaldo or Guillem Balague: Who Do The Claims Effect Most?


On Tuesday news broke that Cristiano Ronaldo had a particular word he liked to nickname Lionel Messi in the Real Madrid locker room. Purely at use to mask his fragility, but nonetheless not creative. An excerpt reveals it as reported by Bleacher report:

The report was presented in claims by Spanish football expert Guillem Balague in his newest biography ‘Messi’. Balague is a very accredited journalist who is sought after by Bleacher Report, and a regular pundit on Sky sports for his commentary and insight on La Liga and both players. He has written an abundance of respected books including his inside looks at Pep Guardiola in ‘Another Way Of Winning.’

So why, when ‘Messi’ was released in March 2014, have claims of the nickname become public now? If Balague had written such claims without proper resources or respectability, would the book have allowed the publication of a possible danger to Ronaldo’s image?
It is hard to say, as plenty of claims have floated around social media. Ronaldo immediately came forth to clear his name on Facebook by offering an aggressive commentary back towards the claims in taking legal action.

Ronaldo facebook

He has every right to defend his image — he is most certainly the world’s most divided footballer between fans. Many tend to adore him and others tend to despise him, most of which stems from his often boisterous or egotistical antics on and off the pitch. He is often criticized for many things, as naturally being the worlds most famous footballer you would have to be prepared for.

Almost regularly, we witness Ronaldo honestly stating he cannot say the things he really means and when he does, the repercussions do not work out in his favor. On this idea, according to because Balague is such as respected writer, Ronaldo ‘would have a lot of trouble proving it’s an incorrect story’.

Thus, who has more to lose?

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A  journalist’s purpose comes in investigation but as well proper information gathering — someone as accredited at Balague, who the football world trusts on many levels, find satisfaction in publishing a false story?

On the other hand it’s difficult because was Balague in the Madrid locker room? Or does he have sources within the club? His response to the fiasco was simply a photo on twitter of the excerpt in his book. The excerpt shown is in it’s original publication of Spanish, luckily I have also read the book and in it’s English translation, you can read it below:

Messi excerpt

The final question which remains is, can this swoop the favoritism for Ronaldo in Ballon d’or voting? Can this blot him enough, regardless of his achievements this year, to sway the award away from his favor? The award takes this kind of behavior into account, so it is possible.

Those who vote are in the industry and have played against or with Ronaldo, therefore some may interpret the claims as rude and others as a joke-like way of warming up for his opposition. Either way the claims are outstanding and can well effect both parties in definitely.

I find it difficult to believe that a journalist of such caliber would find it smart to publish such a story with little resource, considering how (as he mentions in the book) difficult he found it to have the Messi family agree upon revealing information for writing one about their son and family as they very private.

But also, perhaps the story was taken out of context — even as a joke it is brutish, but it could have simply been exclusive to the Madrid locker room. There is an age old cliche which states ‘every joke comes from a thread of truth’ , and in this case joke or not, its place is behind closed doors.

Either way, as details unravel in the story, someone’s career could suffer. Both parties could be at a loss, whether it be fans, money or simply respect.