El Clasico is not a personal battle with Messi - says Cristiano Ronaldo...

Real Madrid's Cristiano Ronaldo has insisted the El Clasico is not a personal battle between him and Lionel Messi.

Ronaldo, who has started his La Liga campaign with 15 goals in seven games, tried to play down the importance of his rivalry with Messi and said the game's focus is on Real against Barcelona and not individuals.

"It will be a difficult match because Barcelona are playing well,' the 29-year-old tol Real Madrid's official website.

"I'm not going to play against Messi, I'm going to play against Barcelona. They are a great team. Real Madrid and Barcelona are playing each other."

Ronaldo also highlighted that Barcelona have one more rest day than his side, but insisted Los Blancos won't use this issue as an excuse.

"It is a difficult match and all footballers know that an extra day's rest is significant," he added.

"We're not going to make any excuses, but I don't understand why they put the match on Saturday.

"Cup matches aren't so important. However, I don't want to make excuses because the team is fine and confident."

Ronaldo has scored 13 goals and assisted further two in his previous 21 El Clasicos, while Messi has scored 21 goals and provided 12 assists in 28 El Clasicos.

Credit: Soccerladuma.co.za