Former Inter Milan player Samuel Eto'o poses as he arrives for the awards (Reuters)
Cameroonian legend Samuel Eto'o has said that he thinks Egypt's Mohamed Salah and Senegal's Sadio Mane deserve to win FIFA’s Player of the Year over the three nominees.
Eto'o, the Africa Cup of Nations' all-time top-scorer, was asked at the awards ceremony held in Italy on Monday who his choice for best player in the world would be between Argentina's Lionel Messi, Portugal's Cristiano Ronaldo, and the Netherlands' Virgil Van Dijk.
“The best one[s]” are Salah and Mane, he replied.
This year’s FIFA awards have seen controversy over the three nominees for best play, and the eventual winner, Messi.
The Barcelona star has won only a single title, that of the domestic league, in addition to winning two individual titles, the European Golden Shoe after netting 36 league goals in 2018/19, and La Pulga, registering the most La Liga assists (13) throughout the campaign.
Argentina, including Messi, were eliminated from the 2019 Copa America semifinals after losing 2-0 to Brazil.
Liverpool winger Salah came fourth in the Best FIFA Men's Player listing, after achieving the UEFA Champions League, joint top-scorer in the Premier League, and being named Liverpool's top goal-scorer in all competitions in the 2018-2019 season.
Senegal's star Mane came in fifth place for the award.
He was nominated for the award after winning joint top-scorer in the Premier League, winning the UEFA Champions League, and helping the Lions of Teranga reach the final of the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations, which they lost 1-0.
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