We have heard about why pundits believe van Dijk, Messi and Ronaldo deserve to win the Ballon d’Or.
But why is no one considering Alisson Becker?
Everyone says how van Dijk was integral to Liverpool’s victories last year; how his presence made the Reds calmer and more structured.
However, shouldn’t we consider the affect Alisson had on the squad too since he won the Champions League in his first year?
Pundits should consider the impact Alisson has on the game. The Brazilian goalkeeper has one of the fastest reaction times I’ve ever seen; it makes it easier for the squad to start the counter-attack. This was an aspect Liverpool fans loved as our own counter-attacks saw Salah and Mane reach maximum potential.
The 26-year-old also had better defensive record than any other goalkeeper. Alisson was able to maintain 21 clean sheets in the Premier League, six in the Champions League and conceded just one goal in the Copa America.
These milestones are a reason why he has been given so many accolades, including UEFA’s Golden Glove 2019, the Premier League Golden Glove 2019 and now FIFA’s Goalkeeper of the year. He is currently the best stopper in the world but gets no recognition from the media whatsoever.
The odds of the Brazilian winning the Ballon d’Or are not very good.
Last month, Rio Ferdinand implied that van Dijk should not win the award either because of the performance Messi and Ronaldo put in last season.
“When a man scores 50 goals in a season like Messi did,” Ferdinand responded. “Or Cristiano [who] won three trophies this season […] you can’t look beyond that.” (sportbible)
Why can’t we look beyond that? Why is it not possible for a defender or goalkeeper to win? They are just as vital to the team as the forwards. No one would pay attention to Messi or Ronaldo if their teams were losing. Barcelona’s and Juventus’s defenders play a part in what makes them exceptional.
Without Alisson in goal for both Brazil and Liverpool, I don’t think they would have stood half the chance in the competitions.
If van Dijk got praise for his accomplishments last year, doesn’t Alisson deserve the same recognition?