Liverpool forward Mohamed Salah has said he was shocked by the results of 2021 Ballon d'Or voting when he finished in seventh place, saying that no one in the world expected him to be so low in the final tally.
However, the Egyptian maintains that he has already done enough in his career to die feeling accomplished.
Salah reached the Africa Cup of Nations final this year and is again leading Liverpool in a tight Premier League title chase.
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What has been said?
"It shocked me [not doing better in Ballon d'Or voting], but there's nothing I can say. No one in the world expected that I would be seventh, but that's what happened," Salah said on Egyptian TV and the DMC channel.
On not making the FIFA World XI, he said: "I do not feel the conspiracy theory, but there may be inaccurate choices, and there are many countries which aren't popular with football knowledge and so far from it. I do not know their choices based on what, but I do not believe in the conspiracy theory.
"I don't have the feeling that there is anything personal against me specifically in the FIFA choices, but this is the reality we are dealing with."
Salah also discussed how he was grateful for many things in his career.
"There are no words to describe how I feel about people's positive comments towards me or to be a reason for their hope," he said. "Today, if I died, It would be after achieving a lot of things that I wanted to achieve.
"People don't realize how happy I am when I come to play for the national team, it's an honor for me to wear the national team shirt.
"The most important match I played in my life was the qualifying match for the World Cup 2018 against Congo, my happiness after the winning goal was indescribable."
The bigger picture
Salah has the chance to finish higher than seventh in the 2022 Ballon d'Or voting, especially if Liverpool win the Premier League or Champions League.
The forward has 19 goals and 10 assists in domestic league action this year.