Spain Coach Vicente del Bosque has reflected that Juventus and Italy midfielder Andrea Pirlo could pick up the Ballon d’Or award this year.
The individual prize that recognises the best player in world football from the previous 12 months is being increasingly discussed in the build-up to the award for 2012.
Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo, Iker Casillas, Andres Iniesta and Xavi Hernandez are among the La Liga-based players hotly tipped to make the final three nominations, but La Roja boss Del Bosque admits that Serie A could have a representative too.
“Yes, Pirlo could well win the Ballon d’Or,” Del Bosque told La Gazzetta dello Sport today.
“He is a complete footballer, capable of creating the play and finishing it off. Admittedly, though, I hope the prize goes to a Spanish player.”