Kanoute: 'Would love to see Griezmann win Balon d’Or’

Commenting on the 2016 Balon d’Or race for which Griezmann is one of the contenders, Kanoute said: "Ronaldo has a big chance because he won the EURO 2016 and is still playing well, but I would like Griezmann to spring a surprise and win it. He has come a long way."

Kanoute praised his former club Sevilla, but felt the title might be a step too far for them.   -  AFP

Former Sevilla and Tottenham star Frederic Kanoute has revealed that Lyon rejected Antoine Griezmann when he was a young player.

Commenting on the 2016 Balon d’Or race for which Griezmann is one of the contenders, Kanoute said: “Ronaldo has a big chance because he won the EURO 2016 and is still playing well, but I would like Griezmann to spring a surprise and win it. He has come a long way. He was in France and Lyon, for example, didn’t want him. He then went to Spain and worked hard with Sociedad, and then to Atletico Madrid. I like the work he has done and he is a strong contender.”

Kanoute, who is India to attend a La Liga screening in Mumbai, predicted Real Madrid to prevail in the El Clasico. “I am not good at predictions, but I will say 2-1 to Madrid. I feel they are coming stronger into this Clasico. They are in a really good mental and physical shape. Barcelona are struggling, but it’s just a one off game and Barca will be more motivated. Anyways I am always wrong with my predictions.”

He also praised his former club Sevilla, but felt the title might be a step too far for them. “It will be difficult, it’s a big season, with many competitions and we have only started. If they finish in the top three, it will be quite positive and something they deserve. I feel it’s still too early to win the league. Although, personally I would like that to happen.”

Kanoute also believed that Sevilla could perform better in the Champions League, than what the recent performances suggest. “Champions League is much harder than Europa League (Sevilla has won the last three Europa Leagues), but they have the quality to go much further than the round of 16. It can reach the semifinals with team that they have.”

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