Bay­ern star be­moans Bal­lon bore

Le­wandowski not im­pressed by ‘cabaret’ af­ter lowly place in vot­ing

China Daily (Hong Kong) - - SPORTS - By AGENCE FRANCEPRESSE

Robert Le­wandowski mocked the Bal­lon d’Or on Twit­ter af­ter the Bay­ern Mu­nich star fin­ished 16th in the vot­ing for the world’s best player.

The Poland in­ter­na­tional is one of the world’s most pro­lific strik­ers, scor­ing 42 goals for the Bun­desliga champion in all com­pe­ti­tions last sea­son, and net­ting 19 times this term.

On Mon­day, Real Madrid su­per­star Cris­tiano Ron­aldo won the Bal­lon d’Or for the fourth time, with Barcelona’s Lionel Messi sec­ond and An­toine Griez­mann of Atletico Madrid third.

Ron­aldo capped a dream year when he won the Cham­pi­ons League for the sec­ond time in three sea­sons and then led Por­tu­gal, which was not among the pre-tour­na­ment fa­vorites, to its first ma­jor ti­tle at Euro 2016.

But Le­wandowski was not wor­thy even of the top 10, ac­cord­ing to the 173 jour­nal­ists from around the world who voted for the award, run by France Foot­ball mag­a­zine.

He mocked the award by post­ing on Twit­ter: “cabaret”, and then “@france­foot­ball”, fol­lowed by pictures of smi­ley faces cry­ing with laugh­ter

His agent, Mail Barthel, later tweeted: “bal­lon­dor @fifa @france­foot­ball Ex­perts vote on this or pa­tri­ots?”

Le­wandowski was nei­ther the high­est ranked Bay­ern nor Bun­desliga player, ac­cord­ing to the vot­ing.

Chile’s Ar­turo Vidal, tied for 14 th, was the best placed player for the Bavar­ian club, while Borus­sia Dort­mund’s Gabon for­ward Pierre-Em­er­ick Aubameyang, who ranked 11th, was the top Bun­desliga rep­re­sen­ta­tive.

On Tues­day, Bay­ern an­nounced that Le­wandowski had ex­tended his con­tract un­til June 2021.

“I’m de­lighted that the dis­cus­sions came to a pos­i­tive out­come and that I’m stay­ing at­tached to Bay­ern for an­other few years. To­gether we still have great aims,” said Le­wandowsk.

He also wrote on Twit­ter: “This club gives me all I need to make my dreams come true. New chal­lenges ahead of us!”

Bay­ern chair­man Kar­lHeinz Rum­menigge said the club was happy to se­cure the ser­vices of “one of the best cen­tral for­wards in the world” on a long-term ba­sis.

Le­wandowski has 58 goals and set up 13 more in 77 Ger­man top-flight matches for Bay­ern since switch­ing from Dort­mund in 2014, win­ning two Bun­desliga ti­tles in the process.

The 28-year-old for­mer Lech Poz­nan player is val­ued at around $60 mil­lion.

“He makes it look easy, he has bru­tally good qual­i­ties,” said Bay­ern team­mate Thomas Muller, who of­ten prof­its from play­ing just be­hind Le­wandowski.

Berry sweet

Mean­while, Ron­aldo had lit­tle time to cel­e­brate his Bal­lon win on Tues­day as Real Madrid got down to busi­ness at the Club World Cup in Ja­pan.

The 31-year-old was pre­sented with an ed­i­ble ver­sion of the golden globe and a plate of berries by cap­tain Ser­gio Ramos be­fore the team trained for Thurs­day’s semi­fi­nal match in Yoko­hama.

Ramos, who looks set to sit out the match with fa­tigue, posted a photo of him­self and Ron­aldo at the team’s ho­tel on Twit­ter with the mes­sage: “Con­grat­u­la­tions, Cris­tiano. You de­serve it.”

Ron­aldo closed on ri­val Lionel Messi’s record five awards af­ter a stunning year in which he helped Real be­come Euro­pean champion for the 11th time and led Por­tu­gal to the Euro­pean cham­pi­onship ti­tle.

But he was back to boss­ing team­mates around on Tues­day as the Span­ish gi­ant — chas­ing a sec­ond world ti­tle in three years — lim­bered up for its test against Mex­ico’s Club Amer­ica.

“We are do­ing a good job,” said Ramos, who has been in­stru­men­tal in La Liga leader Real’s club-record 35-game un­beaten run.

“We’ve got a bet­ter un­der­stand­ing with each other and we’re on the same wave­length,” added the cen­ter­back, who has bagged late goals against Barcelona and De­portivo la Coruna in re­cent weeks.

“The team is reap­ing the benefits of that,” he told the FIFA web­site.

“We want a happy end­ing to what’s been a good year for us. We’d like to get (the ti­tle) back as we had to pass it on last year.”

Madrid coach Zine­dine Zi­dane is miss­ing Gareth Bale as the Welsh­man re­cov­ers from an­kle surgery.

How­ever, Zi­dane was boosted by the re­turn of mid­fielder Toni Kroos from a bro­ken metatarsal.

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