By Johnny Edward:
Golden Eaglets coach Emmanuel Amuneke is confident Barcelona star Lionel Messi will win his fifth Ballon d'Or after he was named in the final three alongside Neymar and Cristiano Ronaldo for the award.
But the former Barcelona star feels unhappy that Andreas Iniesta may never win the award before he retires despite being picked in the initial list of 23 players by FIFA.
In a chat with Completesportsnigeria.com, the former Catalan winger opines that Messi is a worthy winner of the award following his treble heroics with Barcelona last term.
Incidentally Ronaldo has more goals (45) that Messi (44) and Nemyar (41) this year but the 1994 African footballer of the Year winner says that won't count when voting begins.
“Messi is ahead of the two (Neymar and Ronaldo) in terms of performance this year but I feel Iniesta deserves a places in the final three,” Amuneke told Completesportsnigeria.com.
"The award is not all about goals but the total contribution and impact these players have on their team each time they play and I think Messi has a big edge this year and Neymar also did in his absence at Barcelona.
“As for Iniesta, he has been a consistent performer for club and country over the years and it’s so sad he may neverwin it.
“I knew from my days at Barcelona when he was playing in La Masia with Messi and Fabregas.”
The winner will be announced in January 2016 at the FIFA Ballon d'Or Gala in Zurich.