UEFA changed Team of the Year formation to accommodate Cristiano Ronaldo

Lionel Messi Barcelona 2019-20

Juventus forward Cristiano Ronaldo likes to emphasise that his "healthy rivalry" with Barcelona counterpart Lionel Messi during his time in La Liga made him a better player, and since then both have taken their individual battle to be the best in soccer to a whole new level.

On Wednesday, European football's governing body named the XI, which is voted for by supporters. However, with the change of formation allowed UEFA to include the popular Ronaldo instead.

Ronaldo's inclusion and the formation change came at the expense of Chelsea midfielder N'Golo Kante, according to ESPN sources.

Debate rages over who the world's best player is, but a shortlist of two is nearly universally accepted - it is either Messi or Ronaldo.

The Frenchman lost his place in the midfield to Frenkie De Jong and Kevin De Bruyne with the 4-3-3 formation changed to a 4-2-4 to accommodate the former Real Madrid star.

"The formation was chosen to reflect the votes of fans as well as the achievements of players in UEFA competitions", they said.

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A source said: "This is really not good". Such is Ronaldo's popularity at a senior level within the organisation, alarm bells sounded when he did not make the cut and, as a result, the formation was changed.

Of course, it's quite likely that Ronaldo was easily among the top 11 vote-getters, though you'd imagine that's easier to achieve as a goal-scoring forward.

Juventus' Cristiano Ronaldo was included for a record 14th time after helping Portugal to win the inaugural edition of the UEFA Nations League.

"As a result, there are five UEFA Champions League winners and four UEFA Nations League finalists (including one winner)".

Lined up in an offensive 4-2-4 formation, the hypothetical team's last line of defence would be Alisson who has enjoyed a memorable year.

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