Cristiano Ronaldo was absent at the FIFA The Best Awards ceremony where his decade-long rival, Lionel Messi pipped he and Van Dijk to the prestigious individual prize.
The Portuguese player then posted a cryptic message on social media platform, Instagram after opting to skip the awards ceremony.
Ronaldo finished just behind the duo of Lionel Messi and Van Dijk but decided to stay out of the proceedings in Milan on Monday.
The forward will play no part in Juventus’ league game against Brescia due to an abductor injury he sustained.
The 34-year-old’s cryptic message on Instagram read:
“Patience and persistence are two characteristics that differentiate the professional from the amateur,” the five time Balon D’Or winner wrote.
“Everything that is big today has started small. You can’t do everything, but do everything you can to make your dreams come true.
“And keep in mind that after night always comes dawn.”
Cristiano Ronaldo raised eyebrows when he snubbed eventual winner, among his three players’ list. The list comprised of youngsters in Kylian Mbappe, Frenkie de Jong and De Ligt instead.
Messi on the other hand did include Ronaldo, sandwiching his name in second just behind Sadio Mane of Liverpool and current teammate, Frenkie de Jong.
Second-best for the night, Virgil Van Dijk voted Messi as his ballot winner and fixed teammates Mohammed Salah and Mane in second and third place respectively.
Ronaldo who has scored two goals in five outings this term won the award in 2016 and 2017 before losing out to Luka Modric in 2018.
The Portuguese forward’s hand gesture during his side’s 2-2 draw against Atletico Madrid in the Champions League caused an uproar on social media.
However, the former Real Madrid man interpreted the gesture as saying ‘learn, you have to learn’, and suggested that critics were looking too far to find meanings to suit their agenda.
“People like to talk too much, “ the former Manchester United man told Sky Sport Italia . “That’s all. People are stupid and talk too much.”