Paul Pogba may be one of the 30 nominees for this year’s Ballon d’Or, but he says he does not deserve to win.
The Manchester United midfielder made the shortlist for the award for the best player of the year on Monday, with the winner to be named on December 3.
Seven members of France’s World Cup winning team were nominated, including captain and goalkeeper Hugo Lloris, Chelsea’s N’Golo Kante, PSG’s Kylian Mbappe, Atletico Madrid’s Antoine Griezmann and Real Madrid’s Champions League-winning duo Raphael Varane and Karim Benzema.
“Whether it’s Grizou (Griezmann), Kylian (Mbappe) or Raph’ (Varane), they deserve it much more than me,” Pogba told AFP.
“I can not designate one. But I hope with all my heart that this is one of the three.
“One of the four also because there is NG (Kante). That’s all I hope for anyway, because there are many who deserve it. I do not put myself in.”
— #ballondor (@francefootball) October 8, 2018
The last 10 awards have been won by either Lionel Messi or Cristiano Ronaldo and the duo are once again among the favourites.
Meanwhile, asked about his leadership role at the World Cup, Pogba said that being France captain was not one of his goals.
“I’ve never played in the France team to be captain, being here is already a big thing for me,” he said.
“You don’t have to be captain in order to speak, a leader is not someone who has the armband. As a leader you can talk on the pitch but I’ve seen leaders who didn’t necessarily talk.”
“With my age, 25 years old, I’m between the two sets of players, the oldest and the youngest. That allows me to relay messages and have the chance to be heard,” he said.
“I could say what I felt, give messages and pass them on from the older players to the younger ones. I was the go-between you could say.”
The comments come just weeks after Pogba was stripped of the Manchester United vice-captaincy by Jose Mourinho and told he would never captain the team again.