Barcelona skipper Lionel Messi has confirmed he voted for Liverpool striker Sadio Mane in the 2019 FIFA Best Player Award awards.
Messi collected a record breaking sixth Ballon dÓr award in Paris last week, after another outstanding season with the Catalan giants, after picking the FIFA Best trophy back in September.
The 32-year old secured a 10th La Liga title, after netting an incredible 36 goals in 34 league games in 2019-20.
However, Barcelona’s season was tainted with their Champions League semi-final defeat to Mane’s Liverpool, despite Messi inspiring them to a 3- first leg lead.
The Argentinian international, was pushed in both awards by Liverpool’s Virgil van Dijk, who finished second twice, however Messi’s main praise was reserved for Senegalese international Mane.
“There are many great players, and it is difficult to choose,” he told an interview with Canal, reported in Marca.
“But I selected Mane, as he is a player that I love to watch.”
“he had a great year, and was very important to the achievements of Liverpool.”
Messi also confirmed he voted for his old rival and Juventus star Cristiano Ronaldo in second place, with Barcelona team mate Frenkie De Jong in third.
Messi has already started this season in excellent form, with nine goals in nine league games so far, with his league record standing at 50 from the 2011-12 campaign.