BAYERN MUNICH

Flick: "I don't understand why Lahm didn't win the Ballon d'Or"

Hansi Flick feels that Robert Lewandowski "is probably the best number nine in the world" and isn't surprised that he is in the running for the Ballon d'Or.

Flick lauds Lewandowski but wonders why Lahm didn't win Ballon d'Or

Hansi Flick had plenty of positive words to say about in-form striker Robert Lewandowski who is competing with Lionel Messi for this year's Ballon d'Or, but the Bayern Munich coach added that he is flumoxed as to why Philipp Lahm never won the award.

Lewandowski averaging over a goal per game

Lewandowski continued his incredible start to the 2019-20 season by bagging four goals in Bayern's 0-6 thrashing of Red Star Belgrade in the Champions League in midweek. That haul took the Poland international, nominated for the Ballon d'Or, to 27 goals in just 20 appearances since the beginning of the campaign.

But while Flick considered the merits of Lewandowski and Barcelona's Messi, he took the opportunity to address Philipp Lahm's failure to claim world football's top individual prize in a glittering career. Former Bayern right-back-turned-midfielder Lahm won eight Bundesliga titles, one Champions League and lifted the 2014 World Cup, yet he ranked only as high as sixth after Germany's triumph in Brazil.

Another matchball for Bayern Munich's Robert Lewandowski

Lahm's impressive honours list

"Lewandowski and Messi are exceptional players," Flick told reporters.  "Lewandowski is one of the most complete strikers around, if not the best number nine in the world. He has everything you need up front. He can head the ball, finish and hold it up. His work off the ball is important for the team. But I do not understand why a player like Philipp Lahm never won the Ballon d'Or. He won everything [as a team player]."

Bayern, third in the Bundesliga, just one  point behind leaders Borussia Mönchengladbach, face Bayer Leverkusen on Saturday. "We are still one point behind, so we have to rely on others as well," Flick added. "It is important that everyone gives everything and puts their quality at the service of the team."