World football governing body FIFA in a statement issued on Thursday has explained why some votes for Mohamed Salah to win The Best FIFA Men’s Player award were not counted.
Salah did not finish in the top three of the ballot, with his nominations from Egypt’s captain and coach not included.
Lionel Messi was named as the men’s winner, ahead of the likes of Salah, Liverpool team-mate Virgil van Dijk and Juventus’ Cristiano Ronaldo.
The Liverpool star appeared to be upset, when FIFA’s full list of voting was released without his country’s selections.
FIFA said: “During the monitoring of the votes submitted by the Egyptian Football Association (EFA) on August 15, it was remarked that the signatures on the voting forms were in capital letters and thus seemed not valid (not authentic). The voting forms were also not signed by the general secretary which is mandatory.”
FIFA added the President’s Office of the EFA, which has undergone recent structural changes, was contacted about the issue, with no response received in time for the votes to count.
Further questions have been asked of FIFA about the voting process for The Best awards.
Nicaragua captain, Juan Barrera, claimed he did not vote although his name is listed on FIFA’s official document, which says he chose Lionel Messi, Sadio Mane and Cristiano Ronaldo as his top three.
“We have checked the voting documents submitted by the Nicaraguan FA and all documents are signed and confirmed with the official stamp of the Nicaraguan FA.
“Having compared with the vote sheets submitted by the federation and the ones we have published on FIFA.com… we confirm that we have the right votes signed by the player.
“We are asking the Nicaraguan Football Federations to inquire on this matter,” FIFA said.