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Two-time Ballon d'Or winner Ronaldo Nazario has backed Real Madrid forward Karim Benzema to collect the accolade this year, after a steller 12 months for club and country.
The Frenchman may have been short of silverware in 2021 (until the recent Nations League triumph) but on a personal level, this has been one of his best-ever seasons as a pro.
Benzema's start to the 21/22 club season has been especially impressive, as the Real captain has a remarkable nine goals and seven assists from just eight La Liga games.
It isn't all about club form either. After being reintroduced to the French national team, the 33-year-old went on to win the Euro 2020 Bronze Boot, after bagging four goals in as many games at the competition.
It was partially thanks to Benzema's goals that France was able to win the Nations League finals earlier this month, as he netted in the Semi-final and final - while also picking up the MOTM award for his display in France's 2-1 win over Spain.
Needless to say, on a personal level, its been a supreme year for the former Lyon man, who is certainly among the favourites to win the coveted Ballon d'Or award.
However, he'll have to fight off the likes of Lionel Messi, Jorginho and history-maker Robert Lewandowski first, who are certainly contenders.
Messi may not have been at his imperious best this year, but after leading Argentina to a Copa America, the 34-year-old will still be fancied to take home the award once again.
Nevertheless, one man who is vocally backing Benzema to instead take home the trophy is Ronaldo Nazario.
The former Brazil and Real star won the award himself in 1997 and 2002 - meaning that he is better to judge than most.
'Without a doubt, my candidate for the Ballon d'Or is Benzema,' he wrote on Facebook.
'The best striker, brutal level for 10 years and champion above all. Don't you think?'
The Madrid player's current manager, Carlo Ancelotti, is equally glowing about Benzema's chances of winning the Ballon d'Or.
Speaking last month when the striker had eight goals and seven assists, Ancelotti said: 'For what he's doing and for what he's done, he has to be in the list of possible winners.
'Saying that, Karim's got time to win it. I somehow doubt this is his final season - he's like a fine wine; the older he gets the better he is.'
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