Arsene Wenger has proven that he pays absolutely no attention to the Ballon D’or…
It’s been all over the papers this week: neither Mesut Ozil or Alexis Sanchez have made the 30-man shortlist for the Ballon D’or this year. And while this could give us reason to worry that they might move somewhere else where they’re more likely to get noticed, Wenger believes that personal accolades don’t really have a place in football as it’s a team sport.
The boss has never been a fan of the prestigious award.
“We have seen many people only thinking about themselves because they are obsessed by Ballon d’Or and not by the team performance,” Wenger said ahead of Sunderland.
“And I believe football is a collective sport and we live already in a world where everything is individualised.
“We want to respect what football is about, first and foremost about the team effort.”
What was interesting, however, was the fact that Wenger clearly hasn’t been paying attention because he actually congratulated Ozil on his non-existent nomination…
“Of course, I encourage and congratulate the players who do well and I’m happy for that,” he said.
“But when you look at the history you do not always think that it has been the most objective decision always and I think that the players who are the best, we know very well about them.
“Let’s take care of those who are not as much in the glory. The best – we know all about them.
“Certainly there is a big satisfaction for [Ozil] and for us as well, but I am against it because I think it gets in the head of players.”
Slightly embarrassing but I’m sure the boss will laugh it off.
Whether Ozil and Alexis care about the Ballon D’or personally is something we’ll probably never know unless they’re directly questioned about it. Even then, we’d most likely just be fed a rehearsed, media-trained sentence about just wanting to do well for their team etc etc.
Hopefully, they don’t care too much and continue to do their thing for Arsenal.