Real Madrid coach Rafa Benitez picks Cristiano Ronaldo as world's best

Real Madrid boss Rafa Benitez insists 'there is no debate' over whether or not Cristiano Ronaldo is the best player in the world.

Ronaldo followed up his five-goal haul last weekend against Espanyol with a hat-trick in Real's 4-0 win over ten-man Shakhtar Donetsk in their opening Champions League game of the season.

Ronaldo's goals at Espanyol helped him become Real's top scorer in La Liga history, and the Portuguese superstar's hat-trick against Shakhtar has moved him to the top of the goalscoring charts in Europe's premier competition - with 80 goals in the Champions League.

The record-breaking exploits of Ronaldo have opened up the debate again as to who the best player in the world is, with Ronaldo's treble against Shakhtar moving him three clear of rival Lionel Messi of Barcelona.

However, Benitez is adamant that Ronaldo has proved he is the best in the world, even if some people side with Messi for the accolade.

"What surprises me is that the media beat around the bush about what is said rather than what is done on the pitch," Benitez told the Spanish press, in comments covered by Sky Sports.

"There is no debate, he is the best in the world. I have great admiration for him."

Ronaldo may have taken a bit of time to get going this season, but he now appears to be firing on all cylinders again, and that is bad news for Spanish and continental foes as he and Benitez endeavour to get Real back on the trophy trail.

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