Argentina goalkeeper Emiliano Martinez recently tipped Kylian Mbappe to carry on Lionel Messi’s legacy as the Ballon d’Or winner once the little magician retires.
Martinez recently came under the scanner for his behavior towards Mbappe after the FIFA World Cup 2022 final. Many believed the Aston Villa goalkeeper was disrespectful in his public mocking of the French superstar.
Martinez, however, refuted those claims. He first explained that his celebrations should have never come out in public and should have stayed in the dressing room. The 2022 FIFA World Cup Golden Glove winner said (via GOAL):
“It’s a locker room thing, It should never have come out. When France beat us in 2018, I remember there were chants about Messi [involving N’Golo Kante]. Same thing, if a team beats Brazil, they’ll be singing about Neymar.”
Further speaking about France No.7, Martinez said:
“There’s nothing personal against Mbappe. I respect him a lot. If people sing about him or Neymar, it’s because they are top players. After the final, I told him that it was a pleasure to play against him and that he almost won the match on his own… I had confirmation that he has immense talent. When Messi retires, I am sure Kylian will win many Ballon d’Or awards.”
Lionel Messi and Kylian Mbappe are expected to be strong contenders for the 2023 Ballon d’Or award
With Argentina’s triumph in the 2022 FIFA World Cup, Lionel Messi re-established himself as a top contender to win the 2023 Ballon d’Or award. The Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) ace has been in great form for his club side as well. He has scored 15 goals and has provided 14 assists in 25 games this season.
Mbappe, on the other hand, was the top scorer in the 2022 FIFA World Cup. While Les Bleus didn’t win the trophy, he scored a hat-trick in the final. The PSG No. 7 has been in phenomenal form for his club side as well, scoring 25 goals and providing six assists in 26 games.
Both superstars are expected to be leading contenders for the Ballon d’Or prize in 2023. Karim Benzema is the current holder of the award.
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