There were reports doing the rounds about a strained relationship between Luka Modric and Cristiano Ronaldo, following the Portuguese superstar's shocking departure to Juventus. The speculation intensified after Luka Modric pipped his former Real Madrid team-mate to win the UEFA 'Men's Player of the Year' and the FIFA Best Player award
Luka Modric has enjoyed a stellar season for both club and country. He was instrumental towards securing Real Madrid their third consecutive Champions League title. The midfielder produced endless brilliant displays and was one of the best players in the tournament, including in the final against Liverpool.
The Croatian is also a leading contender for the Ballon d'Or, an accolade that Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo have dominated from the past 10 years. Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo are the joint-record holders of the Ballon d'Or, winning the accolade five times, and they could see their record come under a threat by the Croatian.
However, in a recent interview with France Football, the Los Blancos midfielder was quick to rubbish the allegations and insisted that the duo still maintain 'good relations', despite them competing for individual awards.
"We spent six wonderful years in Madrid where we developed a friendship and mutual respect. Now he is gone and we keep in touch, sending messages. And although some people are trying to say that this is not the case, I can say that we are still maintaining good relations," Luka Modric said.
Ahead of this season El Classico, the midfielder was asked about the player who he would love to play with. However, Luka Modric didn't take the name of the Barcelona talisman Lionel Messi and he explained the reason behind that. " I play against him, not with him. Obviously, Messi is one of the best players in history, but I will never play with him."
Meanwhile, problems seem to surfacing at the Croatian's current club Real Madrid. For the first time in more than a decade, the Los Blancos has gone three straight games without a goal after suffering 1-0 loss against CSKA Moscow in an early setback to the Spanish club’s title defense in the Champions League.
To add to their woes in the post-Ronaldo era, this is the third-successive match that the Spanish giants have failed to score and register wins. The last time Real Madrid went goal-less in three consecutive matches was back in January 2007.