Mbappe chooses Messi ahead of Ronaldo to win Ballon d’Or


    PSG striker Kylian Mbappe has backed Barcelona forward Lionel Messi to win the 2019 Ballon d’Or award and claim the prestigious honour for a record sixth time.

    Mbappe, a fellow shortlist nominee for the award feels Messi has done enough in the last 12 months to distinguish himself from Juventus forward Cristiano Ronaldo and the rest of the chasing pack. Liverpool defender Virgil van Dijk currently stands as the favourite, with Ronaldo and Messi breathing down his neck after a solid season with Barcelona.

    The nominated players will contest for the Ballon d’Or on December 2, during a glitzy ceremony in Paris. 

    Speaking on who he thought would win the award with German publication Der Spiegel, Mbappe said: “Messi. In individual terms, he was the best this year.”

    Speaking further, the 20-year-old questioned his own ability, before assuring himself that there is simply no time to ponder over mistakes in football.

    He said: “Sometimes I’m worried. “I’m scared, if you fail as a player, you have doubts, and when you lose in a big match, the question is, is this the end of it? It was nice, but now it’s over!

    “But it does not last long, because the good thing about football is that you do not have much time to think.”

    Mbappe has scored nine goals in 12 games across all competitions in 2019-20 despite spending much of the campaign sidelined by hamstring, thigh and adductor problems.

    He said another issue affecting him at PSG is the language barrier between him and German coach Thomas Tuchel, but said the 46-year-old makes certain words loud and clear.

    “Unfortunately, I do not know nice words in German,” said Mbappé.

    “Just swear words. My trainer is German and he always says that when something bugs him.”

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