2022 Ballon d'Or winner: Thierry Henry picks the two favourites for award

Thierry Henry picks Ballon d'Or between Mane and Benzema

Liverpool vs Real Madrid in the Champions League final is a battle between Sadio Mane and Karim Benzema for the Ballon d’Or, according to Thierry Henry.

Both Liverpool and Real booked their place in the Paris final in dramatic circumstances this week.

Jurgen Klopp’s side threw away their 2-0 first-leg lead in the first half of their second-leg in Spain before scoring three second-half goals to triumph 5-2 on aggregate.

But that was nothing compared to what happened at the Bernabeu 24 hours later.

Real Madrid were set to be eliminated as they trailed Manchester City 1-0 on the night and 5-3 on aggregate.

Step forward Rodrygo Goes with two goals in second-half injury-time to force the tie into extra-time. A Karim Benzema penalty in extra-time completed the comeback and set up a final clash with Liverpool.

Real Madrid v Manchester City Semi Final Leg Two - UEFA Champions League

Liverpool will go into the showpiece occasion as slight favourites. But given the way Carlo Ancelotti’s have defied the odds to overcome Paris Saint-Germain, Chelsea and now Man City, you’d be a fool to write them off.

If winning the biggest prize in club football wasn’t enough, Henry believes the final will also determine the winner of the Ballon d’Or – Mane vs Benzema.

Appearing on CBS Sports as a pundit following Real Madrid vs Man City, Henry thinks the individual accolade will go to one of Mane or Benzema depending on the result of the final.

VIDEO: Henry thinks UCL final is also Mane vs Benzema for Ballon d’Or

“The thing about the final – and to make it even bigger – the two favourites for the Ballon d’Or are Mane and Benzema,” Henry claimed.

“So that will add an extra little spice into it. I still believe that Benzema is ahead but if Mane wins it with Liverpool and they do make the quadruple, that’s a pretty strong case. And it will be great for Africa but I’m still going for Benzema.”

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Earlier this week, we brought you GOAL’s 2022 Ballon d’Or power rankings who had Benzema as favourite. As for Mane, who helped Senegal win AFCON earlier this season, was ranked as fifth favourite behind Mohamed Salah, Robert Lewandowski and Kylian Mbappe.

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