Tuchel says Jorginho “deserves to win the Ballon d’Or after a breathtaking season”

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Thomas Tuchel believes Chelsea midfielder Jorginho deserves “the Ballon d’Or” after an incredibly successful season for club and country.

The 29-year-old won the Champions League with Chelsea in late May before playing a pivotal role in Italy’s triumph at Euro 2020 and was among the 30 players nominated for the Ballon d’Or on Friday.

Lionel Messi is the bookmaker’s favorite to win the prestigious award for the seventh time next month, but Tuchel believes Jorginho should be rewarded for his efforts when the winner is announced in Paris on November 29th.

“Jorginho deserves to win the Ballon d’Or,” said the Chelsea manager during an appearance at the annual sports festival in the Italian city of Trento, according to Football Italia.

“He’s a very intelligent player and it’s a pleasure to be his coach.”

Only four midfielders – Luis Figo in 2000, Pavel Nedved in 2003, Kaka in 2007 and Luka Modric in 2018 – have won the Ballon d’Or since the turn of the century.

The award has often been criticized for neglecting players with predominantly defensive duties in favor of goal scorers.

Tuchel suggested that choosing a winner from a shortlist of footballers in various roles was anything but an exact science and devalued the award.

‘He [Jorginho] has a great vision of football, “added the German.

“For me, individual prizes are not very important, a real comparison between several players with different roles is impossible.

“I want one of my players to win because I know what the effect would be.

“Then Jorginho is a great person and a great player, but in general that’s not the most important thing.”

The Brazilian-born Italian international is one of five Chelsea players nominated for the award alongside midfielders Mason Mount and N’Golo Kante, Cesar Azpilicueta and Romelu Lukaku.

The latter became the Blues’ record signing this summer when he returned to Stamford Bridge with Inter Milan seven years after leaving Chelsea to Everton on a £ 103m deal.

Tuchel said the Belgian is a completely different striker than the one who joined Goodison Park in the summer of 2014 after being loaned out at West Brom and Everton in the previous two seasons.

“We were looking for a very physical striker, a point of reference, a player with personality who could take the pressure off the younger players’ shoulders and give us the chance to play football faster,” he said.

“It was important for him to return to England, where he played as a young man. I knew he was an extraordinary person. ‘

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