Zlatan Ibrahimovic: Why I never won the Ballon d'Or

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Scroll through the mini-gallery to see Zlatan Ibra
Scroll through the mini-gallery to see Zlatan Ibrahimovic's goal tallies for the past four seasons
2021/22 - 8 goals from 22 appearances in all compe
2021/22 - 8 goals from 22 appearances in all competitions so far
2018/19 - 31 goals in 31 appearances in all compet
2018/19 - 31 goals in 31 appearances in all competitions
2019/20 - 11 goals in 20 appearances in all compet
2019/20 - 11 goals in 20 appearances in all competitions
2020/21 - 17 goals in 27 appearances in all compet
2020/21 - 17 goals in 27 appearances in all competitions

AC Milan striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic has made an outlandish claim about why he has been overlooked for the Ballon d'Or award that has been dominated by Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi for more than a decade.

The enigmatic Sweden forward has had a trophy-laden career that has seen him build up a reputation as one of the best forwards of all time after starring for the likes of Ajax Amsterdam, FC Barcelona, and Inter Milan and many more clubs.

In his 21 years as a professional to date, the goal-getter has scored 554 times for club and country, per Transfermarkt, but his goals and numerous trophies have not been enough to secure the Golden Ball, with Ronaldo and Messi having claimed the prestigious individual accolade 12 times in the past 13 years.  

Scroll through the mini-gallery above to see Ibrahimovic's goal tallies for the past four seasons

Ibrahimovic has now insisted there were off-field reasons behind his constant omissions for the Ballon d'Or title.  

"These are political awards," the forward told German outlet Bild.  

"They want 'Mr Perfect'.

"If you speak and say what you think, you can't get them. 

"It's easy to give them to Mr Nice Guy.  

"It doesn't change anything for me, it doesn't make me better or worse." 

Read: Messi addresses Argentina future

The 40-year-old also recently opened up about when he will retire from professional football. 

"I want to play as long as I can," Ibrahimovic told UEFA.com. 

"The reality is I'll play until I see that someone is better than me, so I'm still playing.  

"The future is yet to be written. I don't plan. Let's see what happens. 

"I don't want to regret stopping football and then saying that I could continue to play football because then I'd regret it for the rest of my life, seeing that I could have continued."  

Here are the three highest-paid managers in each of Europe's top five leagues, and what their monthly salaries are

Spain's LaLiga: 2. Carlo Ancelotti (Real Madrid) -
Spain's LaLiga: 2. Carlo Ancelotti (Real Madrid) - €910 000 a month
Spain's LaLiga: 1. Diego Simeone (Atletico Madrid)
Spain's LaLiga: 1. Diego Simeone (Atletico Madrid) - €3.33 million a month
Spain's LaLiga: 3. Marcelino (Athletic Bilbao) - €
Spain's LaLiga: 3. Marcelino (Athletic Bilbao) - €500 000 a month
England's Premier League: 2. Jurgen Klopp (Liverpo
England's Premier League: 2. Jurgen Klopp (Liverpool) - €1.49 million a month
England's Premier League: 3. Antonio Conte (Totten
England's Premier League: 3. Antonio Conte (Tottenham Hotspur) - €1.49 million a month
France's Ligue 1: 2. Jorge Sampaoli (Olympique Mar
France's Ligue 1: 2. Jorge Sampaoli (Olympique Marseille) - €330 000 a month
Germany's Bundesliga: 3. Marco Rose (Borussia Dort
Germany's Bundesliga: 3. Marco Rose (Borussia Dortmund) - €375 000 a month
France's Ligue 1: 1. Mauricio Pochettino (Paris Sa
France's Ligue 1: 1. Mauricio Pochettino (Paris Saint-Germain) - €1.1 million a month
England's Premier League: 1. Pep Guardiola (Manche
England's Premier League: 1. Pep Guardiola (Manchester City) - €1.89 million a month
France's Ligue 1: 3. Christophe Galtier (OGC Nice)
France's Ligue 1: 3. Christophe Galtier (OGC Nice) - €330 000 a month
Italy's Serie A: 2. Jose Mourinho (AS Roma) - €770
Italy's Serie A: 2. Jose Mourinho (AS Roma) - €770 000 a month
Italy's Serie A: 1. Massimiliano Allegri (Juventus
Italy's Serie A: 1. Massimiliano Allegri (Juventus) - €1.17 million a month
Germany's Bundesliga: 2. Gerardo Seoane (Bayer Lev
Germany's Bundesliga: 2. Gerardo Seoane (Bayer Leverkusen) - €416 000 a month
Germany's Bundesliga: 1. Julian Nagelsmann (Bayern
Germany's Bundesliga: 1. Julian Nagelsmann (Bayern Munich) - €666 000 a month
Italy's Serie A: 3. Simone Inzaghi (Inter Milan) -
Italy's Serie A: 3. Simone Inzaghi (Inter Milan) - €620 000 a month