The 2019 Ballon d’Or race is approaching its conclusion. In four months time, one player will be crowned as the best in Europe over the last year, taking over from Luka Modric. However, one Liverpool star has ruled himself and his teammates out of the race to pick Lionel Messi.
Liverpool’s Sadio Mane has backed Lionel Messi to win the 2019 Ballon d’Or over himself and his teammates Virgil van Dijk and Mohamed Salah. The Reds’ trio have been in fine form over the last half-year, however, Mane states that he will recognize Messi as the winner.
“I will recognise that he deserves to win it,” said Mane. (via Sport Bible)
“For sure, everybody knows Messi, so I don’t have to describe how good he is.”
Meanwhile, Virgil van Dijk himself joined the Senegal international in stating that it is indeed Lionel Messi, who deserves to take home football’s most-coveted individual honour.
“I think Messi is the best player in the world,” said Van Dijk.
“He deserves it as long as he plays, so the Ballon d’Or is not something I’m thinking of.
“If it happens, obviously I would take it, but I don’t think there is any [chance].
“He is still the best player in the world. It doesn’t matter if he’s not in the Champions League final.”
Both Mane and Van Dijk played a starring role in Liverpool’s UEFA Super Cup win over Chelsea. The Senegalese, in particular, was instrumental as he scored twice during the match. The Champions League winners eventually were victorious following a penalty shootout.