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Dublin: 9 °C Thursday 25 April, 2019

Ramos: If Iniesta was 'Andresinho', he would've won Ballon d'Or

The Real Madrid defender believes his Spain team-mate and fellow World Cup winner should have been named the best player on the planet at some stage.

Image: Mike Hewitt

BARCELONA MIDFIELDER ANDRES Iniesta would have two Ballons d’Or if he was named Andresinho, according to Real Madrid captain Sergio Ramos.

Iniesta, 33, is expected to announce he will leave Barca at the end of the season after 16 trophy-laden campaigns with the La Liga giants.

But the superstar midfielder is set to finish his career without a coveted Ballon d’Or, despite top-three finishes in 2010 and 2012.

Ramos believes Iniesta was unfortunate not to win the individual honour at least once.

“If Andres was called Andresinho, he would have two Ballons d’Or,” he said after Madrid’s 2-1 win over Bayern Munich in the first leg of their Champions League semi-final on Wednesday.

Spain international Iniesta has won eight La Liga titles and four Champions League crowns at the club, while he helped his nation to the 2010 World Cup and two European Championships.

The closest he came to being named the best player on the planet was in 2010, when he finished as runner-up in the Ballon d’Or vote behind Barca team-mate Lionel Messi.

He then claimed third place in 2012, with Messi once again coming out on top.

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