Johannesburg - Cristiano Ronaldo claims that he is not arrogant, and admits that he fears the generally negative perception of his ego has dented his chances of winning the Ballon d’Or.
The argument goes that over the past two months, CR7 and Lionel Messi have been impossible to separate, when it comes to their feats of brilliance for Real Madrid and Barcelona respectively.
But the popular notion has arisen- mainly due to their on-field personalities and occasional statements to the press- that Messi is selfless and humble, while CR7 is only concerned about himself.
It seems that people are willing to make Messi the favourite to win a fourth-straight Ballon d’Or simply because they think he is a nicer guy than Ronaldo.
Portuguese superstar Ronaldo disputes that he is arrogant however, and says he would love to be able to reveal his true nature to his many critics.
Speaking to CNN World Sport on Thursday, Ronaldo admitted he had worried about losing the Ballon d’Or as a result of the public’s assessment of his character.
"I don't want to cry about that, but sometimes I think yes,” he said.
"Why? It's question that I never give the 100 percent right answer, because sometimes I really don't know. Maybe I agree, I have bad image on the pitch... because I'm too serious, but if you really know me, if you are my friend, if I leave you inside my house, if you share the day with me, you will know I hate to lose.
"People who call me arrogant, I would like to sit with them and to have a chat with them to see which way to they think I'm arrogant because I think they need to sit with me to know who is the real Cristiano.
"It (the Ballon d'Or) means a lot for me. I would put everything in one bag and try to see what they (the contenders) have done by the year.
“If you speak about me and Leo, who won more things? Who played better? Who won the most important trophies? So I cannot say I deserve to win, but I think I'm in a good position."
Between Messi and Ronaldo, only the Madrid man has gone on record to admit his desire to scoop the Ballon d’Or.
And it remains to be seen if CR7’s revelations can convince the voters to set aside their perceptions of his personality, to judge the winner on one years’ worth of football exclusively.