Taiwo Awoniyi has backed Mohamed Salah as the future Golden Ball winner, insisting that his former Liverpool team-mate is on par with Lionel Messi and Robert Lewandowski.
Salah finished seventh on the Golden Ball list this year, despite being rated by many as the best in the world based on his current form.
Surprisingly, the Egyptian striker was not selected in the shortlist of 23 players in FIFPRO XI, which was published this week.
The 29-year-old has made no secret of his desire to win all the major awards in football, individual and team, and Awnoiyi, who trained with Salah in Liverpool before joining Union Berlin, believes his story serves as inspiration for all African players of the future.
“I met him and I saw him in training, he is a player who has everything. He has the experience. He has played for Chelsea, Roma and now Liverpool. This guy has already reached the top. He is on a par with Messi and Lewandowski,” said Awnoiyi.
He added: “Salah does everything and is a guy who always wants to do more for himself and the club.”