LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Sunday, August 8, 2021: Liverpool's Mohamed Salah during a pre-season friendly match between Liverpool FC and Athletic Club de Bilbao at Anfield. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

The 17 captains who voted for Mo Salah as world’s best – including Liverpool pair

Mohamed Salah received first-place votes from 17 of his contemporaries in FIFA’s ‘The Best’ awards, including Liverpool team-mates Virgil van Dijk and Andy Robertson.

FIFA held their annual awards ceremony on Monday evening, and Salah lost out to Robert Lewandowski for the Men’s Player of the Year award.

The Bayern Munich striker earned the prize, with Lionel Messi placing second, just above Salah – who received 39 points in the voting, five fewer than Messi and nine fewer than Lewandowski.

National team captains and coaches, along with journalists from each nation, provided their selections for first, second and third, with 17 captains opting for Salah.

Van Dijk and Robertson were the most notable, while Liverpool’s No. 11 also received the backing of Granit Xhaka (Switzerland) and Andre Ayew (Ghana).

The full list of captains to vote for Salah is below:

  • Brunei Darussalam – Azwan Ali Rahman
  • Ghana – Andre Ayew
  • Guyana – Matthew Briggs
  • Jordan – Mutaz Yassin
  • Lithuania – Ernestas Setkus
  • NetherlandsVirgil van Dijk
  • Palestine – Abdelatif Albahdari
  • Peru – Paolo Guerrero
  • Qatar – Hassan Alhaydo
  • ScotlandAndy Robertson
  • Switzerland – Granit Xhaka
  • Syria – Omar Alsomah
  • Togo – Dakonam Ortega Djene
  • Tunisia – Youssef Msakni
  • UAE – Ismaeil Matar
  • Yemen – Sadeq Ahmed
  • Zimbabwe – Knowledge Musona

Mohamed Salah celebrates scoring, Everton, Goodison Park. 1 Dec 2021 (Image: PA Images / Alamy Stock Photo)

Tellingly, he did not receive any votes from Messi or Lewandowski, while Cristiano Ronaldo also overlooked the 29-year-old along with Republic of Ireland captain Seamus Coleman.

Salah himself voted Jorginho as the world’s best player for 2021 – which, despite the midfielder winning the Euros with Italy and the Champions League with Chelsea, suggests political voting – with Messi second and Lewandowski third.

Messi did not vote for either of his main competitors, with the PSG forward naming Neymar top, Kylian Mbappe second and Karim Benzema – who ranked fourth overall – third.

It is perhaps unsurprising, too, that Salah received a clean sweep of snubs from England, with Harry Kane, Gareth Southgate and the Times‘ Martyn Ziegler all overlooking the Egyptian.