Cristiano Ronaldo believes Mohamed Salah's Ballon d'Or chances are not yet finished, should the Egyptian recover from his shoulder injury.
The Egyptian, 25, injured his shoulder after a coming together with Sergio Ramos in the Champions League final against Ronaldo's Real Madrid and is fighting to be fit in time for Russia.
Ronaldo could realistically face off against Salah's Egypt with Portugal in this summer's World Cup, with a last-16 tie a real possibility.
And speaking ahead of the tournament in Russia, Ronaldo did not rule Salah out of the running for the Ballon d'Or, instead insisting that it will not just be the Ronaldo vs. Lionel Messi race for the individual accolade.
Ronaldo as quoted by the Liverpool Echo claimed: "Mo Salah has been one of the revelations of the year.
"I hope his injury in the final in Kiev doesn’t keep him out [of the World Cup].
"Many people talk about the Cristiano Ronaldo-Lionel Messi battle but there are other players who have chances to enter the race [for the Ballon d'Or].
"Salah is one of them.”
Salah was forced of the field in tears during May's European final, unable to continue having badly damaged his shoulder following a rugged challenge from Real captain Sergio Ramos.
However, the Egyptian's recovery appears to be going well, with the forward going as far as to suggest that he will be ready for Egypt's opening group stage match game against Uruguay.