By John Essien
Ronaldo Nazario says Karim Benzema deserves the Ballon d’Or crown, claiming the striker has maintained ‘brutal level’ performance over the past decade.
Last week, Ballon d’Or had released their 30-man long list to be named as this year’s ‘world’s best player, with the likes of Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo and Robert Lewandowski tipped as favourite.
Chelsea midfield pair, Jorginho and N’Golo Kante have also been shortlisted for most likely winners, with the former winning the Champions League and Euro 2020.
However, the legendary Brazilian forward who has been crowned twice believes the award should go to the Real Madrid man.
The youngest ever winner of the award took to Facebook to say, “without a doubt, my candidate for the Ballon d’Or is Benzema. The best striker, brutal level for 10 years and champion above all. Don’t you think?”
Without Cristiano Ronaldo, Benzema has become more important for Los Blancos over the past couple of years, becoming the main goalscorer.
The 33-year-old has so far scored 35 goals for club and country this calendar year and helped France win the Nations League at the weekend, after Paul Pogba’s rousing half-time speech in the final.
Speaking recently, Benzema revealed that winning the Ballon d’Or was a childhood dream, saying, “Since I was a kid, it was always a dream of mine to win the Ballon d’Or, It’s the dream for most players.
“It’s true that football is a team game but when you help the side to win, when you’re instrumental in triumphs, when you score winning goals, it’s natural for any player to aspire to win the Ballon d’Or.
“Of course, I’ll work as hard as I can to win that trophy and I hope, someday, fulfill the dream I had when I was a young boy.”