Cristiano Ronaldo says recent allegations of tax evasion "spoiled" his Ballon d'Or win.
Ronaldo, 31, was in the eye of the storm last week when a number of international media outlets picked up documents released by the Football Leaks website that said he had used an Irish holding company to avoid paying tax on tens of millions of euros of revenue to Spanish authorities.
Ronaldo's representatives have strenuously denied any wrongdoing, but the newly crowned Ballon d'Or admitted the issue had taken some of the shine off picking up football's most-coveted individual prize for a fourth time.
"Of course it has spoiled it a little bit. I would be lying if I said it hadn't. I'm not a hypocrite," he told France Football shortly after being handed the award in a taped segment at Madrid's Santiago Bernabeu stadium.
"I don't always say what I think, because sometimes it works against me. But of course I wasn't pleased. The whole process in itself, and it's not necessary to say where all that started, is hard not only for me, but also for the people alongside me: my family, my son, all those who work with me. My son goes to school. He's starting to understand things.
"All that irritates me, because I try to do things correctly, be transparent. You just have to type 'Cristiano Ronaldo' on the Internet, and you know everything about me.
"I don't have any reason to lie. Everything is written about me, about my girlfriends... what came out troubles me. Because it's not true. The lie is troubling.
"But I'm a little bit used to people talking about me, for better or for worse. You have to live with it."
Ronaldo said he considered the legal allegations more serious than the usual gossip.
"When people talk about my private life, my friends, the place I went on holiday, whether or not I have a girlfriend, it's normal," he said. "But when it's something serious like this, that has to do with the law... I have my lawyers, the club, the people who work for me. It hurts me, because we always try to do things well.
"When they speak about me, and the way in which they do that, I don't feel good. Because I have done things correctly. There are a lot of innocent people in prison. And I feel a little bit like that. You know you have done nothing wrong, and they say you have done something reprehensible. No one likes that."
He added: "But the truth always comes out. Sooner or later."