'Baffles me': Rio Ferdinand suggests £50m Chelsea player's been nowhere near as good as Mohamed Salah this year

Rio Ferdinand has suggested that Chelsea midfielder Jorginho has been nowhere near as good as Liverpool ace Mohamed Salah this year. 

Pundit Ferdinand has been debating some of the world’s best players in the lead up to the Ballon d’Or award, with the winner announced on 29 November.

Jorginho, who has won the Champions League and European Championships in 2021, is included on the 30-man shortlist for this year’s individual prize. The 29-year-old has helped pulled the strings for club and country as a deep-lying midfield playmaker.

In contrast, Liverpool’s attacker Salah has failed to win silverware in 2021. However, his form in the past couple of months has been irresistible and he’s arguably the world’s most in-form player right now.

Ferdinand is suggesting that Jorginho shouldn’t be in the conversation for Ballon d’Or winner ahead of Salah. It’s worth pointing out that he picked Bayern Munich’s Robert Lewandowski as his overall winner, though.

“The Jorginho one baffles me. He’s not the best player at Chelsea and he’s not the first name on the sheet with Italy either,” Ferdinand said when discussing this year’s Ballon d’Or contenders. 

“He’s a very good player, don’t get me wrong, and I’m not trying to be disrespectful, but I don’t see how he gets on the list with those players (Robert Lewandowski, Mohamed Salah, Lionel Messi and Karim Benzema). 

“If you look at Chelsea in the run in to winning the Champions League, I think N’Golo Kante was man of the match in five of the last six games. He’s won two of the big trophies, I understand that, but when you’re putting him up against them four other players there, it doesn’t really make sense.”

Photo by John Powell/Liverpool FC via Getty Images

Jorginho heartbeat of Chelsea side

Yes, Jorginho isn’t a goalscorer or someone that gets fans off their seat.

However, there is a beauty to the way he can receive possession on the half turn and get his teams playing at a certain tempo.

His accomplishment over the summer months mean he deserves to be in the conversation for Ballon d’Or winner, albeit he may be pipped by goal machine Lewandowski.

Pat Nevin raved about Jorginho’s latest display at the weekend, so his form stretches beyond just the summer, too.

Salah in this kind of form may be the best in the world and this isn’t an argument to say Jorginho is better. But, you simply can’t overlook what a special 2021 it’s been for the Italy international.

Photo by David Lidstrom/Getty Images

He justified £50m cost

Chelsea splashed out £50million to sign Jorginho from Napoli back in July 2018.

Of course, criticism of him during his time in England has seen many take a swipe at his sizeable transfer fee.

However, he’s looked very much a £50million-plus player during 2021.

Blues manager Thomas Tuchel is managing to get the very best out of him and Chelsea look a much stronger outfit when Jorginho is bossing proceedings at the base of midfield.

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A sports journalist who graduated from Staffordshire University in 2016 and is a Chelsea supporter. Loves anything football or cricket related when it comes to England.