Algeria coach Djamel Belmadi has sparked controversy by not choosing his compatriot Riyad Mahrez, the leader of the “Desert Warriors”, in the vote for the FIFA award for the best player in the world in 2021.
The International Football Association “FIFA” published a list of the voting leaders, coaches, and journalists, after the FIFA awards ceremony, and the surprise came with regard to Belmadi’s choices, and the absence of Mahrez’s name.
Belmadi ignored his compatriot Real Mahrez, and preferred to choose the French Karim Benzema, the Real Madrid striker, who comes from the Algerian islands, in the first place, then the Egyptian star Mohamed Salah, the top scorer of Liverpool, in the second place, and then the other Frenchman, N’Golo Kante, the Chelsea midfielder.
Belmadi’s disregard for Mahrez raised the astonishment of the Algerian fans on social media, according to a report by the Algerian “fennecfootball” website, as some considered this a shock by the “Al-Khidr” coach towards the Manchester City star.
The controversy also sparked when Mahrez himself did not vote for the best player award, as the captain of the Algerian national team, and some rumors indicated the possibility of imposing a penalty on him by FIFA for ignoring the participation in the vote.
However, the “fennecfootball” website stressed that voting is not compulsory and the failure to participate in it by any player does not entail sanctions from the International Football Association “FIFA”.
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