Ancelotti 'surprised' by Kroos absence from Ballon d'Or nominees
Real Madrid coach Carlo Ancelotti says all the team's players deserve to be nominated for the Ballon d'Or award.
Real Madrid coach Carlo Ancelotti said Saturday he was surprised that German midfielder Toni Kroos did not feature on the list of 30 finalists for the Ballon d'Or.
Five Real Madrid players were nominated for the Ballon d'Or on Friday Thibault Cortois, Casemiro, Luka Modric, Vinicius Junior, and favorite Karim Benzema.
New signing Antonio Rudiger is also on the list but there was no room for the German midfielder Kroos.
"It surprises me a bit, because Kroos had a fantastic season... But it's true that it could be a problem if we named all the Real Madrid players, I can understand that," considered Ancelotti in a press conference ahead of Madrid's Liga opener at Almeria on Sunday.
"But (Federico) Valverde, (Eder) Militao, (David) Alaba... all deserve to be there," he added.
He emphasized that "All of them had a fantastic season. I'm not talking about winning the Ballon d'Or, but they deserve to be on the list."
Ancelotti was particularly pleased with the inclusion of Brazilian forward Vinicius on the 30-strong list of nominees.
"He scored the winning goal in our 14th Champions League, he had an incredible season," noted the Italian coach.
The Ballon d'Or will be awarded on October 17.
Real Madrid will kick off the defense of their La Liga against newly-promoted Almería.
"We are feeling good, we have all the hope in the world as we start this season," expressed Ancelotti, adding that "each game will be very difficult, starting tomorrow".