PORTUGAL 1 - 0 FRANCE

Cristiano: "This will help me win Ballon d'Or...but I'm not obsessed"

The Portugal captain, who went off injured after 25 minutes in his side's Euro 2016 final win against France , added: "I've cried a lot tonight. I'm so happy. We deserve it..."

Cristiano: "This will help me win Ballon d'Or...but I'm not obsessed"
Darren Staples REUTERS

Cristiano Ronaldo Ballon d'Or 2016

“I’ve been looking to win [a major international trophy] for a long time now…since 2004. I’m really happy, it’s one of the best moments of my career,” beamed Cristiano Ronaldo after Portugal’s 1-0 win over France in the Euro 2016 final on Sunday night.

Portugal's Cristiano Ronaldo celebrates with Ricardo Quaresma, Nani, Rui Patricio and the trophy after winning Euro 2016

“I’ve always said that I wanted to win something with Portugal to go down in history and I’ve done it,” added Ronaldo, 12 years after losing the European Championship final to Greece in Lisbon.

The Real Madrid star only played 25 minutes of the match against France after taking a blow to the left knee, but that didn’t stop him basking in the glory of his nation’s first ever major honour.

"It's an unforgettable moment...we deserved it"

“It’s an unforgettable moment,” said the 31-year old and three-time Ballon d’Or winner. “I’d won everything at club level, but I was missing something with the national side. We deserved it. There have been many years of sacrifice, and no one believed in us.”

Ronaldo also praised the work of Portuguese coach Fernando Santos. “He was the most important person at this tournament. He said that we’d only return to Lisbon on July 11th [the day after the final]. Many were left marked by his words, myself included.”

Referring to the Ballon d’Or, Ronaldo remarked: “This victory will help me, but I’m not obsessed by it.”