Monday, January 20, 2014


All smiles: Ribery celebrates winning the FIFA Club World Cup after Bayern Munich beat Raja Casablanca

Bayern Munich star and France midfielder Franck Ribery has blasted the voting system for the FIFA Ballon d'Or, claiming he was more deserving of the award than winner Cristiano Ronaldo because he won five trophies in 2013, while the Real Madrid star did not win any.

Ribery had seem to accept coming third behind winner Ronaldo and second-placed Lionel Messi at the award ceremony in Zurich last Monday, even claiming that individual awards were not important to him. 

However he has come out all guns blazing in a powerful interview with AZ.
Big names: Cristiano Ronaldo (left), Lionel Messi (centre) and Ribery ahead of the Ballon d'Or award

'I won everything I could win with Bayern and individually. Ronaldo, on the other hand, did not win anything. I am not sad that I missed out, but it does hurt a bit. I deserved to win the Ballon d'Or'
Winner: Ribery believes Ronaldo shouldn't have won the Ballon d'Or after a trophyless 2013

Ribery, who claimed the Bundesliga title, the German cup, the Champions League, the European Super Cup and Club World Cup with Bayern in 2013, even appeared to have suggested that changes were made in this year's voting system to help Ronaldo's cause, by extending the deadline at the same time the Portugal star had almost single-handedly seen off Sweden in a World Cup play-off.
Champion: Ribery believes his medal haul of five trophies in 2013 should have seen him win the Ballon d'Or

'It was clear that Ronaldo would win it. The voting deadline was extended by two weeks. This had never happened before. It wasn't about football. It was a political decision.'

He also criticised the FIFPro World XI - FIFA's team of the year - for only having three Bundesliga stars in it, despite the 2013 Champions League final being contested by Bayern and Borussia Dortmund.

Not happy: Bayern Munich's Franck Ribery has slammed Cristiano Ronaldo's 2013 FIFA Ballon d'Or award
'There are only three Bayern players in there. That's madness. [Thomas] Muller deserves to be there, and so do [David] Alaba, [Bastian] Schweinsteiger and [Arjen] Robben. 

'We won five titles and made history. And then there's the absence of Borussia Dortmund players. Where are [Mario] Gotze and [Robert] Lewandowski? This is impossible.'

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