Liverpool's Mohamed Salah deserves to win the 2018 Ballon d'Or and can secure the prize with a match-winning Champions League final display, according to John Arne Riise.
Salah has enjoyed an astonishing first season at Anfield, scoring 44 goals in all competitions and helping Liverpool to the final of Europe's premier club tournament for the first time since 2007.
And Riise, part of that Reds team 11 years ago, believes Salah has already done enough to edge ahead of Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi in the running for football's top individual honour.
"[Salah] is so humble, he is so calm, he is always smiling. He gives his all for the team," Riise told Omnisport.
"This season, everything he has hit has been a goal. He is, for me, [deserving of] the Ballon d'Or this year. And if he wins the Champions League, or when - can I say when? - it will be 100 per cent sure.
"For me, he has been the best player this year."
5 - Players to be involved in the highest proportion of goals for their side in the Premier League this season:— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) May 14, 2018
50% - Mohamed Salah (Liverpool)
44% - Pascal Groß (Brighton)
43% - Harry Kane (Spurs)
43% - Xherdan Shaqiri (Stoke)
39% - Riyad Mahrez (Leicester)
Salah has dovetailed with fellow Liverpool stars Sadio Mane and Roberto Firmino, with Riise grateful that he has retired and is not required to take on a fearsome front three.
"It's hard to mark them because they keep changing positions and they're quick, they're technical, they can score goals, they can make assists for each other," he said.
"Plus they work together as a team and the front three is really powerful. I'm glad I'm retired and I don't play!
"They have to play the football they know best [in the final]. Our front three can hurt any team in the world and Madrid are going to be aware of that. Madrid can do the same.
"It's going to be a game, hopefully, with a lot of goals and, at the end, Liverpool are going to be the winners."
|Strickland breaks hand punching door after blown save, out for up to eight weeks|
|He will have received good money – Costa delighted by Griezmann extension|
|Kane: Pochettino sent me love hearts after World Cup heroics|
|Nationals place Adams on 10-day DL with broken finger|
|Dybala: I can play alongside Messi|
|Lewandowski: Poland didn´t take enough risks|
|England´s Kane aiming to reach Ronaldo, Messi levels with World Cup performances|
|Kicker given three-year match-fixing ban|
|England confirm Alli thigh injury|
|Federer through, Zverev out in Halle|
|Back on the map and earning letters from ladies, Tabarez embraces Uruguay´s heritage|
|Rampant England rout Australia in record-breaking display|
|Pulisic in right place at Dortmund, says Arena|
|Wilshere confirms Arsenal exit|
|NASCAR at Sonoma: TV schedule, standings, qualifying drivers for Toyota/Save Mart 350|
|Muguruza and Kvitova cruise through in Birmingham|
|Leno among top 10 most expensive goalkeepers|
|Pained Salah unable to halt Russia´s unlikely march|
|Kyrgios downs ´legend´ Murray as Dimitrov and Djokovic progress|
|Neymar pain normal – Coutinho unconcerned by ankle issue|
|Russia 3 Egypt 1: Salah strikes but hosts right on course for last 16|
|We must make Ronaldo less exceptional, says Morocco boss Renard|
|Chandimal handed one-Test ball tampering ban, faces further ICC charge|
|Arsenal sign goalkeeper Leno from Leverkusen|
|Mexico style in Germany win surprised Arena|
|Monaco complete €20m move for Lyon teenager Geubbels|
|Saudi team don´t know cause of aeroplane fire, Pizzi reveals|
|Champions League qualifying draw: Celtic travel to Armenia, Ajax face Sturm Graz|
|I´ve never seen a player win on his own – Santos shrugs off Ronaldo dependence|
|Murray impresses despite narrow defeat on return|
|West Ham land club-record Diop signing|
|El Hadji Diouf hails ´perfect start´ for Senegal|
|Cisse and Senegal give cause for African celebration|
|Carvajal ready to face Iran - Hierro|
|Japan´s World Cup victory over Colombia sparks celebrations on the streets of Tokyo|
|Poland 1 Senegal 2: Good fortune and bad errors hand Africans Group H win|
|England shatter ODI world record with total of 481 against Australia|
|Best yet to come from England hero Kane, says Rashford|
|Salah starts for Egypt against Russia|
|De Jong expects to stay at Ajax|
|Barcelona angered by Pique´s involvement in Griezmann saga|
|Federer begins Halle defence with comfortable Bedene win|
|Tabarez not worried by slow Suarez start|
|Brazil´s Neymar felt pain in his ankle, CBF confirms|
|Griezmann understands Atletico fans´ nerves over Barcelona speculation|
|Queiroz salutes Hierro for uniting Spain|
|Stump from Scotland´s defeat of England auctioned for charity|
|Red Bull will not have works team label, confirm Honda|
|Neymar hobbles out of Brazil World Cup training|
|Ronaldo´s revelry, Messi´s miss and Sanchez´s shocker - Russia 2018, World Cup of the penalty|
|Brazil ask FIFA to explain VAR decisions against Switzerland|
|Colombia 1 Japan 2: Sanchez red spoils Pekerman´s plans|
|Argentina v Croatia: Mercado wants an end to ´Messidependencia´|
|Hoffenheim director suggests €50m bid could land Kramaric|
|England will emerge as a ´champion team´, insists Jones|
|Ryder Cup teams shaping up great, says Strange|
|We cannot replace Iniesta – Abidal|
|Colombia´s Sanchez sees second-quickest World Cup red card|
|France v Peru: Varane and Les Bleus calm after unconvincing start|
|Semenya challenges IAAF hyperandrogenism rule with CAS|
|No Germany line-up changes needed, says Neuer|
|James absent from Colombia line-up|
|Alli to have scan on thigh knock after England win|
|Mooy not using World Cup to facilitate transfer from Huddersfield|
|Billy Vunipola a big loss for England, says Vermeulen|
|´Incredible´ Firmino works like a defender, says Mane|
|Jackson and Olding could make Ireland returns|
|Stokes and Woakes ruled out of T20I matches|
|Denmark v Australia: Socceroos confident of reaching last 16|
|Argentina should have selected Icardi for the World Cup, Zanetti claims|