When the 59-player Ballon d’Or long list was leaked last week, a few names stood out. One of those was 23-year-old Australia and QPR Massimo Luongo.
Though he was named Most Valuable Player in the Socceroos’ successful Asian Cup run earlier this year, he’s only just returned to the Championship this season after playing the last three years in third-tier League One with Swindon Town. But no one was more surprised by his inclusion on the list than Luongo himself.
From the Guardian:
“I didn’t even know if it was real … I thought it was someone trying to be funny,” he said. “It’s obviously a big honour, not many people get on it, I can say I’ve been on the Ballon d’Or list now. I don’t know what to say about it … it’s a bit random.” […]
“Boys joke about it with me, the boys are taking the piss a little bit, I do myself as well” he said. “If it was something like a big move or something, the media attention would play on my mind a little bit but this [doesn’t affect me] maybe because I’ve got no chance of winning it.”
But then he changes his mind. “I’m on the list so you never now,” he laughs.
Massimo Luongo for Ballon d’or 2015, please.