Zlatan Ibrahimovic, the AC Milan striker, has claimed he was overlooked for Ballon d’Or recognition down the years because he does not fit the “Mr Perfect” mould that the organizers look for in Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo.
Messi and Ronaldo have won the awards 12 times between them.
The duopoly was only broken by Real Madrid midfielder, Luka Modric, in 2018.
Ibrahimovic has scored over 500 club goals and is still playing at 40.
The Swede would have expected all that to put him in contention for a prestigious individual prize at some stage, but he considers himself to be too outspoken.
Ibrahimovic told Bild: “These are political awards. They want ‘Mr Perfect’.
“If you speak and say what you think you can’t get them.
“It’s easy to give them to Mr Nice Guy. It doesn’t change anything for me, it doesn’t make me better or worse.”
His best finish came in 2013 when he claimed fourth place.