Napoli center-back Kalidou Koulibaly believes compatriot Edouard Mendy deserves to be nominated for the Ballon d’Or: “We have to double our work to be well judged.”
The Senegalese defender spoke to the media after his country’s 4-1 win over Namibia in World Cup qualifiers.
When asked for his thoughts on the Ballon d’Or nominations, Koulibaly didn’t hold back, claiming Chelsea goalkeeper Mendy should be in the top 30 players of the year.
“It’s a real shame that Edou isn’t one of them. He is the first African goalkeeper to win the Champions League, ”said the 30-year-old.
“We have to keep working and moving forward. We have to do double that [the work] be judged well by some people.
“Edou is a very positive person. We talked about it together. He will keep fighting to be a part of it. For me he has a place among these 30 players. “
Koulibaly was also snubbed off the 30-strong shortlist.
Italy’s stars Gigio Donnarumma, Giorgio Chiellini, Leonardo Bonucci, Nicolò Barella and Jorginho are among the candidates, alongside Inter striker Lautaro Martinez and Milan defender Simon Kjaer.
Chelsea and Manchester City are the clubs with the most Ballon d’Or nominees (five), followed by PSG (four), Juventus, Manchester United, Inter and Real Madrid (two). Milan, Atletico Madrid, Barcelona, Bayern Munich, Borussia Dortmund, Liverpool, Tottenham and Villareal have one player among the nominees.
Why were Chiesa, Insigne and Verratti snubbed off the Ballon d’Or shortlist?