Posted on November 28, 2006
Arsene Wenger believes it was a “mistake” not to award the prestigious Ballon d’Or to Thierry Henry as European Player of the Year. The Gunners’ boss also feels that the World Cup represents the “lowest level” of football.
Henry was beaten into third place by two Italian World Cup winners – captain Fabio Cannavaro, who collected France Football magazine’s Ballon d’Or, and goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon.
Henry, 29, had helped Arsenal reach their first European Cup final and also reached the World Cup final of his career with France.
And Wenger felt his striker deserved more recognition. Asked what he thought about the outcome of the voting, he responded:
“It is a mistake. It shows that the people who vote look only at the World Cup, which when you speak about elite football, in my opinion, is the lowest level in football that you can see at the moment.
“They make their decision on that.”
Wenger continued: “If you see Italy playing against Togo or South Korea you cannot say that Cannavaro has a good game or even Thierry Henry has a good game, that he is the best player in the world – look at the players he plays against.
“To be consistent in a big championship like in England or in the Champions League for me would be much more appropriate than three weeks in the World Cup.”