In the buildup to the highly anticipated UEFA Champions League final between Real Madrid and Liverpool, we heard a lot of talk about how the result of the final would settle the Ballon d’Or debate.
Liverpool’s manager Jurgen Klopp talked about the same, suggesting that the Ballon d’Or winner should be only Ronaldo, Messi, or a Champions League winner. Former Real Madrid player Steve McManaman went on to say that Mo Salah or Sadio Mane could win the award if Liverpool won the final.
Now that Real Madrid has won the Champions League, there won’t be any more talk about the Ballon d’Or contenders. I felt that Karim Benzema deserved the Ballon d’Or winner irrespective of the Champions League result, but now no one has any reason to point their finger at Benzema and say that he doesn’t deserve the annual prize awarded by France Football.
Lionel Messi shows respect to Karim Benzema, his old rival
And now that the situation has become much clear, we have some more people supporting Benzema to win the prestigious award every footballer dreams of. Paris-Saint Germain’s star player and the 2021 Ballon d’Or winner Lionel Messi is one of the first people to do so, admitting that he has no doubts about Karim Benzema winning the Ballon d’Or.
The Argentine, who has the record for the most Ballon d’Or awards, also appreciates the Frenchman’s efforts in the Champions League, saying that he had a spectacular year and he shouldn’t be any more doubts.
Benzema was unstoppable in LaLiga as well, winning the Pichichi award with 27 goals and 12 assists to his name, and leading Real Madrid to their 35th league title. He also won the Supercopa de Espana with Real Madrid and the UEFA Nations League with France.
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This is literally the best case a player can present for a Ballon d’Or competition. Now, it is simply the time to talk about who would occupy the places from second to fifth, and forget about the winner.