Bayern Munich legend Franck Ribéry has spoken out about coming third in the Ballon d'Or rankings in 2013, labelling it as the "biggest injustice" of his whole career.
The former France international was at the peak of his powers in his early 30s, and many fans across the world felt like Ribéry should have won the Ballon d'Or following Bayern Munich's historic treble.
But instead, Ribéry came in third place, with 23.36% of the votes, while second place Lionel Messi (24.72%) also missed out on winning European football's most coveted individual award to Cristiano Ronaldo (27.99%).
Fans at the Allianz Arena still feel aggrieved about Ribéry missing out to this day, and the Frenchman didn't mince his words when he recently weighed in on his placing in the Ballon d'Or in 2013.
"More than a disappointment, it's the biggest injustice of my career," Ribéry told L'Equipe (quoted by Sport Witness). "Not only for me, for many people. I was on top and I finished 3rd. I had nothing to envy Ronaldo or Messi that year. I say it in all humility because it is the truth."
During the 2012/13 campaign, Ribéry was the talisman in Jupp Heynckes' side and he was involved in 34 goals across all competitions, including setting up Arjen Robben's match-winner against Borussia Dortmund in the Champions League final at Wembley
Saying goodbye to the fans at Allianz Arena yesterday was so incredibly hard 😢🙏🏼 But one thing I know for sure: I will carry you in my heart wherever I go ❤⚪🙌🏼 #MIASANMIA @FCBayern— Franck Ribéry (@FranckRibery) May 19, 2019
📸 Finn Clausen / Nadine Bauer pic.twitter.com/gWj5m9VxgP
Ribéry missing out wasn't the first time that a player other than Messi or Ronaldo arguably should have won the award, as some believe that Wesley Sneijder was in with a shout three years earlier.
The 2010 award remains the only time that Juventus' Ronaldo hasn't finished inside the top three since 2007, while Messi missed out for the first time this year.