For the past week or so, there’s been a lot of reaction to the list of nominees published by France Football for the upcoming Ballon d’Or.
Many expect the final duel to be between Lionel Messi and Jorginho, but few upsets have been as great as that of Edouard Mendy being snubbed from the 30 players.
Sadio Mané, El Hadji Diouf and many others have already had their say on the matter, as has the Chelsea goalkeeper himself briefly, but the player was asked about it once again when speaking to Canal+ in France.
Unlike his compatriots, Mendy was far more measured in his answer, and remains appreciative of everything that has happened to him in the past year or so, going from being fairly unknown outside of Ligue 1 at Stade Rennais to being among the top 10 goalkeepers in the world, in the running for the Lev Yashin trophy.
#TDA 🌍 – 🗣 "C'est quelque chose qui me motive pour être plus performant"
👉 Dans Talents d'Afrique, Edouard Mendy 🇸🇳 est revenu sur sa non-sélection dans la liste des 3️⃣0️⃣ pour le Ballon d'Or !
🎙 Est-ce une injustice selon vous ? pic.twitter.com/yuTTfrsBTQ
— CANAL+ SPORT Afrique (@cplussportafr) October 18, 2021
He said: “I saw the list at the same time as many people, and I got a lot of messages from people close to me and from some I didn’t even know, so I was really touched by this wave of messages I got, whether it be calls or on social media. It’s something that’s really huge, it really touched me to a point I wasn’t expecting. All this affection and recognition is what pushes me to work and continue to get titles with club and country. It’s just happiness and motivation.
“Do I think it’s an injustice? No, I wouldn’t use that word. It’s something that motivates me to go forward, to work and be performant at club level and with my country, and as I said after the game with the national team, it’s the journalists’ freedom of vote and expression, and they vote honourably and conscientiously.”
The reason for all this furore around his omission is the fact that he was key in Chelsea’s run to winning the Champions League, as he only conceded three goals on their way to the final, which they won 1-0 by seeing off Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City.
There’s always next year, and there’s also every chance he walks away with the best goalkeeper award, although he will have to see off Gianluigi Donnarumma for that title, who was instrumental in his country lifting the 2020 Euros.