sport news Robert Lewandowski plays down reports in Spain of a rift with Lionel Messi over ...

sport news Robert Lewandowski plays down reports in Spain of a rift with Lionel Messi over ...
sport news Robert Lewandowski plays down reports in Spain of a rift with Lionel Messi over ...

Robert Lewandowski has clarified that he is grateful for Lionel Messi's kind words at last week's Ballon d'Or ceremony, insisting that he was not aggrieved by any lack of sincerity in a bid to play down any row with the Argentine.  

On Tuesday, media across Europe seized on remarks made by Lewandowski during an interview with a Polish outlet, in which he was reported to have deemed Messi's comments as 'empty words' and lacking sincerity

However, the Bayern Munich striker has told Sportsmail that this is not the case, and that Messi's sentiments - in which he called for France Football to retrospectively hand the Pole the 2020 Ballon d'Or - 'really touched me and made me happy'. 

'My statement, which I made in an interview with a Polish TV / Via Play broadcaster, is currently being misinterpreted,' he said. 'I never say that Lionel Messi's words were not sincere.

'On the contrary: Lionel Messi's speech at the event in Paris, in which he expressed that, in his opinion, I deserved the Ballon d’or 2020, really touched me and made me happy.

'With my statement, I just wanted to express that I would of course be very happy if Messi's words were heard.

'I respect and appreciate Lionel Messi beyond measure and once again congratulate him on winning the Ballon d’or 2021.' 

Robert Lewandowski (L) has clarified that there is no rift between him and Lionel Messi (R)

Robert Lewandowski (L) has clarified that there is no rift between him and Lionel Messi (R)

Messi, 34, pipped Lewandowski, 33, to the prestigious award at last week's ceremony in Paris

Messi, 34, pipped Lewandowski, 33, to the prestigious award at last week's ceremony in Paris

In his acceptance speech, Messi said that Lewandowski should be awarded the 2020 prize

In his acceptance speech, Messi said that Lewandowski should be awarded the 2020 prize

Messi, 34, controversially pipped Lewandowski, 33, to the 2021 prize, with many fans and pundits opining that the Polish marksman was more deserving of the award.

The Bayern Munich striker was the standout performer of 2020 and was cruelly denied the Ballon d'Or that year as it was cancelled due to Covid.

In his acceptance speech, Messi acknowledged that Lewandowski deserved the prize for 2020, and called on event organisers France

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