Blatter: Messi didn’t deserve Golden Ball

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The Argentine captain was handed the trophy for the best player at this year’s Mundial in Brazil after his side’s 1-0 loss to European counterparts Germany in the Final of this year’s event.

Many critics were surprised that the Barcelona superstar had been handed the award, with Blatter himself hinting at the time that he felt Germany goalkeeper Manuel Neuer deserved the accolade ahead of the talented forward.

Blatter has now publicly revealed his opinion that Messi should not have received the trophy, barely minutes after the 26-year-old was nominated as one of 23 players in line for the 2014 Fifa Ballon d’Or.

"I think the decision to give Messi the Golden Ball was incorrect," Blatter told reporters at a press event in Russia as he inspected preparations for the 2018 World Cup.

"I was surprised when I received the committee’s decision. They told me they had only looked at 10 of the players who took part in the final."

Messi, who has won the Ballon d'Or four times in his career, endured a trophy-less season with club side Barcelona last season, and is not tipped as the favourite to win the award for a fifth time.

Counterparts Cristiano Ronaldo, Arjen Robben and Manuel Neuer are early favourites to scoop the coveted award.

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