Can Mo Salah Win 2022 Ballon d’Or?
Mohamed Salah was named the PFA Player of the Year for the second time last season, becoming just one of only seven players in the history of the Premier League to achieve that feat.
Salah has committed his future to Liverpool FC by signing a new contract over the summer, which will see him continue playing for the reds for another three years. He will be hoping to continue with his winning streak to pick up both individual and team honours.
Fast Start to Season
The Egypt international was instrumental in helping Liverpool win two trophies last season. He will also be key if the reds are to go one better in the Premier League and Champions League in the upcoming campaign. They are currently priced as the 5/1 second-favourites in the outright odds for Champions League betting and staked at odds of 9/4 as the second-best in the markets for the Premier League next season, too.
With this year’s Ballon d’Or prize set to be handed out in December, it is important that Salah gets off to a fast start in the 2022/23 competitions. He did exactly that 12 months ago before departing for the Africa Cup of Nations for Egypt.
Even more will be expected from Salah now that Sadio Mane has left the club to join Bayern Munich. This could lead to the Egyptian having his best season yet on Merseyside. He found the back of the net on 44 occasions on his debut campaign and it would be no surprise to see him complete something similar this year.
No World Cup
Unfortunately for Salah, he will not be competing at the 2022 World Cup in Qatar, which is a big disadvantage for this year’s Ballon d’Or prize. Egypt was beaten by Senegal in their play-off final for the tournament.
Senegal prevailed on penalties in that tie after the scores were level following two fixtures. It means many of Salah’s rivals for the prestigious European award will have an advantage as they will get the chance to shine on the world stage later this year.
Benzema Likely to Be Pole Position
Many believe the leading contender for the 2022 Ballon d’Or is Real Madrid striker Karim Benzema. He scored 44 goals last season for the Spanish giants, helping them to the Champions League and La Liga double.
The 34-year-old has been playing some of the best football of his career for club and country in 2022. Despite being nominated on nine occasions, the Frenchman has yet to win the Ballon d’Or.
Benzema will be featuring for France at this year’s World Cup. Les Bleus go into that tournament as one of the leading contenders. The Real Madrid man was not part of the France squad, which won the World Cup four years ago, so he will do all he can to get his hands on the trophy this time.
If Salah is successful in this year’s Ballon d’Or, he will be only the second Liverpool player in history to win the award after Michael Owen in 2001.