Former Barcelona star Cesc Fabregas has suggested that Karim Benzema may not be nailed on to be crowned as the winner of the Ballon d’Or award. The Spaniard believes that after Thibaut Courtois’ performance against Liverpool, he could be in with a shout.
Courtois has been picked as an outsider to win the Ballon d’Or award by Fabregas after a man-of-the-match performance against Liverpool.
Real Madrid completed a Champions League campaign full of upsets with a 1-0 win over Liverpool in the final, with Vinicius Jr grabbing the all-important goal. Liverpool failed to score in any final this season, although it was the heroics of Courtois that kept them at bay in Paris.
Heading into the final, many fans believed that the Ballon d’Or could be decided with Mohamed Salah, Sadio Mane and Karim Benzema all the overwhelming favourites to secure the award. But now Fabregas feels as though Courtois has put himself in the conversation.
“Today I needed to win a final for my career, for all the hard work to put respect on my name because I don’t think I have enough respect, especially in England.” But Courtois has certainly gained the respect now, even from his former Chelsea team-mate Fabregas.
Courtois added: “I saw a lot of criticism even after a great season, that I was not good enough or whatever. I am just really happy and proud of the performance of the team. We stuck to it and when I needed to be there, I was there for the team.”