Former Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers thinks "politics" is to blame for Luis Suarez being overlooked for the Ballon d'Or. The 42-year-old Northern Irishman managed Suarez during his time at Anfield and finds it "incredible" that he did not make the three-man shortlist for the coveted award.
Suarez has been in stunning form since joining Barcelona, where he helped the Catalans to win La Liga, the Copa del Rey and the Champions League last season. However, he did not make it on to the shortlist for this year's award, which was contested by Neymar, Cristiano Ronaldo and eventual winner Lionel Messi.
"For him not to be in the top three of the Ballon d'Or was incredible and it tells you that there's other politics behind him not being involved in that bracket," he told Sky Sports, according to the Daily Mail.
"He left Liverpool as a world-class player and he's gone into a Barcelona team that was already up there and made them better. Playing with that level of players as well has obviously made him a better player. He's still young enough to win that accolade but he's certainly up there with the best."
The former Liverpool boss claimed Suarez only ranks behind his Barcelona teammate Messi as the best striker in the world. "If I were to have a striker in my team, apart from Lionel Messi, he's certainly the one. I see him playing in a team that allows him to maximise his abilities," he said.
"He's always been a worker ... what's been brilliant to see is that people questioned whether he was good enough when he got there. Quickly, with his work rate and his mentality, he gets the respect of his teammates.
Rodgers' view has been echoed by his former Liverpool teammate Jamie Carragher, who said he considers the Uruguayan to be a superior player to Brazilian superstar Neymar.
"I think he's the best striker in the world, I think he's better than Neymar. He's part of a three; Messi, Ronaldo and Suarez, certainly the last two years," the ex-Liverpool defender explained.