Deco: Andrés Iniesta deserves to win the Ballon d’Or
Deco believes former team-mate Andrés Iniesta deserves to win the Ballon d’Or.
The two midfielders had four years together - 2004-2008 - at Barcelona. Deco suggests only Zinedine Zidane compares with Iniesta and insists the Spaniard is under-appreciated.
“Speaking of Iniesta I think there is only one player who can compare - Zinedine Zidane,” he told Mundo Deportivo, as reported by Football Espana.
“Andres is a phenomenon. What happens, though, is that he has [Lionel] Messi, who obstructs from the media with his greatness. But for those of us within the game, Iniesta is brutal.”
Deco also bemoaned the competition Iniesta faces, with Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi always the front runners for such accolades.
“Certainly he [Iniesta] deserves the Ballon d’Or. The problem is having two animals ahead of him in Leo and Cristiano. It is difficult. Because Cristiano is another beast.
“The most impressive aspect of Messi and Ronaldo’s greatness is that they are overshadowing huge players like Iniesta, [Zlatan] Ibrahimović and [Franck] Ribéry.”
Deco retired at the end of August. In September, the 36 year-old was found guilty of doping offences. As a result, he is banned from football for a year.
In 2004, he finished runner up to Andriy Shevchenko for the Ballon d’Or. The award was merged with the FIFA World Player of the Year accolade in 2010.