Big footballing names slam FIFA for omitting Wesley Sneijder’s name from the three-man short list of Ballon D’Or nominees, which consists of all 3 players from Barcelona.
Inter Milan president Massimo Moratti was first of the big names to raise voice for Sneijder. He said that in his opinion no player had a better season that the Dutchman. Sneijder won the Champions League with Inter Milan last season, and also played a big role in his Holland side’s successful campaign in the World Cup, ending in defeat in the Final. The Nerazzurri President believes these accolades should be enough to earn Wesley the first-ever FIFA Ballon D’Or. He said:
“I don’t think it is fair: Wesley Sneijder has had a phenomenal season and he has won everything he could have won, for me he deserved to win the Ballon d’Or, I didn’t think it is right that the award is going to be given to another player who didn’t perform the whole year, even if we are speaking about a great player."
Even the UEFA president Michel Platini believes that the wrong decision has been made, after Sneijder’s omission from the final list. Platini said: “I would have said Xavi and then Sneijder, who for one goal didn’t win everything, and then Iniesta, It’s unjust the Inter man not being in the top three”
The most controversial words said in Sneijder’s support were from Zlatan Ibrahimovic, who launched a scathing attack on FIFA’s honesty and believes politics plays too big of a role in determining the winner.
“It’s sad that he won’t win after what he accomplished last season, including at the World Cup, but now that award has only become a political issue and it doesn’t interest me to win it anymore”
Surprisingly, Sneijder has also got support from Barcelona midfielder Xavi, who is among the nominees for the award. Xavi said, “Sneijder, I know that in Italy they are angry because he is not one of the finalists. I can only agree with them. The Dutchman has had a fantastic year and deserves to be there.”
Even after all this support, Wesley Sneijder himself elects to stay quiet and believes there is nothing he can do about this now. Sneijder said, “I give my congratulations to Messi, Xavi and Iniesta, even if I’m sorry”
“But there is nothing I can do. Everyone wants to me to say something, but there is nothing I could say or do” – Sneijder
The three nominees for the merged FIFA Ballon D’Or awards are; last year’s winner Lionel Messi, Xavi Hernandez and Andres Iniesta. The winners are to be announced at Zurich on 10 January 2011.