Piers Morgan’s love for Cristiano Ronaldo holds no bounds, but he did once get called out by Virgil van Dijk for defending the forward.

With Lionel Messi winning the World Cup, the journalists attempts have been getting ever more desperate, to the point you have to wonder if he’s trying to convince himself.

Of course, the recent love in between Morgan and Ronaldo is nothing new, with the 57-year-old having defended the unemployed forward for sometime now.

Back in 2019 it was Liverpool centre back Van Dijk who managed to piss the former News of the World editor, by making a joke about the five time Ballon d’Or winner.

It was at that year’s awards, after the Dutchman had a great year, and finished second to Messi on the podium, that he managed to annoy Piers.

At the ceremony in Paris, a reporter asked van Dijk about Cristiano Ronaldo’s absence and his reply was very tongue in cheek.

“Cristiano Ronaldo won’t be here tonight, so that’s already one less rival to care about,” van Dijk was told to which he replied, “Was Cristiano Ronaldo really a rival?”.

Morgan, who is a friend of Ronaldo’s and calls the 37-year-old the greatest player to ever live, saw the quote on social media and said: “No.. @Cristiano is a far greater player, you’re not in his league.”

“Responded with as much class as you show on the pitch. Well said, Virg,” one fan said.

“If you give him an exclusive interview Virg you’ll move into Ronaldo’s league. That’s how Piers forms his opinions,” another responded, unaware at the time of the significance Ronaldo’s next interview with Morgan would have three years later.

A third replied, “Don’t give him attention, it’s all he ever wants. Desperately sad man.”

And a fourth opined, “Wouldn’t waste your time replying to that numpty Virgil, only thing he’s good at is tapping dead children’s phones, he’s in a league of his own at doing that.”

“You could argue that it’s hard to hear anything, when his head is so far up Ronaldo’s butt,” a fifth summed it up perfectly with.

Van Dijk at the awards in 2019. Image: AlamyVan Dijk had been complimentary of Ronaldo earlier in his interview and took offence to Morgan believing he was making fun of him.

It’s unlikely the Dutchman will have to worry about coming up against the forward anytime soon, as he’s left Manchester United.

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Words by Dan Marland and Ryan Sidle