Sun 12 June 2022 | 14:29

Salah: I want to join Weah & become the 2nd African Ballon d'Or winner

Mohamed Salah has his sights set on the Ballon d'Or after a season in which he has won multiple individual awards.

Mohamed Salah is hoping to follow in the footsteps of George Weah, the first African to win the Ballon d'Or, and was "shocked" by his seventh-place result last season.

In the annual awards ceremony to identify the finest men's footballer in the world, the Egypt international finished sixth and fifth, respectively, in 2018 and 2019.

But, two years later, following a 2020 cancellation, he dropped out of the top six, as Lionel Messi increased his record haul. 

Salah has scored 46 goals in 46 appearances for


since then, including a domestic cup double, a second-place

Premier League

finish, and another

Champions League

final in 2022. (31 goals, 15 assists).

He has also won several individual awards, including another Premier League Golden Boot, the FWA Footballer of the Year, and, most lately, the PFA Player of the Year.

But it may not be adequate for the forward to follow in the footsteps of Liberia's George Weah, who is the only African to have won the Ballon d'Or previously. 

"I want to win it to join George Weah, the only African [in 1995]," Salah told L'Equipe.

"It's true that I was shocked by my ranking in 2021 (seventh). For this year, the defeat against Real Madrid is a disadvantage, even if I played a good game in the final.

"But it doesn't cancel out everything I've achieved for months. Let's wait for the vote. And if I'm not Ballon d'Or in 2022, I'll do everything I can to be the next one."

Salah's sadness at losing in the Champions League final to Real Madrid last month hasn't diminished his admiration for Benzema, a fellow forward and Ballon d'Or leader.

Salah confesses that he recognizes himself in the France forward, and that he has a similar attitude to how he exerts himself on the rest of the squad. 

"I understand what Benzema says. He doesn't just see himself as a goalscorer, he knows he influences every aspect of Real Madrid's game," he added.

"Like others, I want to be seen as the best player in the world.

"At Liverpool, everyone runs for everyone else. If I don't fight for the defence, they won't fight for me.

"I have to be an example, to be the first to press, to sacrifice myself for the team."


source: SportMob

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