Antoine Griezmann is well positioned to win the Ballon d'Or in 2018, according to Atletico Madrid coach Diego Simeone.
Griezmann hit two goals in Atletico's Europa League final defeat of Marseille in May before going on to help France secure the World Cup.
The forward, named one of his club’s new captains on Tuesday, hit three goals for Les Bleus at Russia 2018, including converting a penalty in the final against Croatia.
Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi have dominated the Ballon d'Or in recent years, winning the award five times apiece to establish a duopoly.
But Simeone believes Griezmann, who signed a new long-term contract to commit to Atleti, putting an end to rumours of a move to LaLiga champions Barcelona, is in the running for the prize this year.
"The Ballon d'Or is a decision that those who know about this will have to make," Simeone told reporters. "But it is clear that Griezmann is well positioned.
"Football is marvellous as nobody has one truth - you can win in different ways. We saw that again with France winning at the World Cup, with some characteristics similar to Atletico."
Atletico take on city rivals Real Madrid in the UEFA Super Cup in Estonia's capital city Tallinn on Wednesday in their first competitive game of the new season.
Simeone gave no clues as to his possible team selection when he spoke at a pre-match news conference on Tuesday, with Griezmann a doubt due to his extended break following the World Cup.
"Everyone who has come can play, until tomorrow afternoon they will not know who will start," Simeone said.
"Based on their last two matches, perhaps we can see how tomorrow's game will go. They pressure well when they lose the ball and pressure high up the pitch to recover the ball. That is what [Julen] Lopetegui did as Spain national coach. I imagine he will follow that same line.
"Obviously our budgets are not the same. But in motivation we never feel lower than anybody. In this game we will try and do everything we can to bring the game to a place we want.
"Important players want to come to Atletico Madrid, and the young players do not want to leave - Koke, Saul [Niguez], Lucas [Hernandez], Thomas [Partey] - and keep growing with the club. That is collective work from the club and us [coaches] to keep growing and improving.
"The important thing is to play with excitement and emotion. That can decide the match."
|Serena not blaming ankle injury for Australian Open loss|
|Mavericks capitalise on Clippers´ turnovers, pick up win in Smith´s return|
|Pliskova saves four match points to stun Serena with comeback win|
|Anthony ´can only make´ a team better, says Iverson|
|Henry more worried about Monaco´s future than his own|
|Osaka powers past Svitolina in Melbourne|
|Harden on Anthony trade: It kind of sucks that it didn´t work out|
|Redskins remain ´optimistic´ QB Alex Smith will play again|
|Patriots coach Belichick says Rams´ Donald is ´pretty much unblockable´|
|PSG fined €100,000 by LFP over player-recruitment practices|
|I´m not his father - Guardiola demands Mendy matures|
|Sykes record in vain as Banvit claim victory|
|Usain Bolt calls time on football career|
|Otamendi not happy at Man City, says Guardiola|
|Workaholic Woods learning to rest as he prepares for 2019 debut|
|Henry´s Monaco dumped out of Coupe de France|
|Qatar can win Asian Cup, says Sanchez|
|Tim Howard to retire following 2019 MLS season|
|Koscielny backs Bellerin to return from injury ´stronger than before´|
|Chiefs fire DC Bob Sutton after AFC Championship loss to Patriots|
|Reyes returns to Spain with second-tier strugglers Extremadura|
|Emiliano Sala: Profile of Cardiff City striker missing after joining from Nantes|
|Messi rested for Sevilla trip, Boateng set for debut|
|Nuno fined over pitch celebration in Leicester win|
|Nadal unfazed by another Next Gen opponent in Tsitsipas|
|Ulster hand lifetime ban to spectator after Zebo abuse|
|Phehlukwayo´s career-best day inspires Proteas against Pakistan|
|Bournemouth pounce for Brentford´s Mepham|
|You say all signings are controversial – Valverde defends Boateng arrival|
|Search for missing Sala plane suspended|
|Kohli and Williamson display mutual respect as India and Black Caps prepare for battle|
|Qatar 1 Iraq 0: Al Rawi free-kick books quarter-final spot|
|Ba joins Adebayor and Robinho at Istanbul Basaksehir|
|BREAKING NEWS: Tottenham´s Alli out until March with hamstring injury|
|Fit-again Joseph added to England squad|
|It is very, very serious for us - Tuchel wants midfielder in January window|
|Lakers expect Rajon Rondo back Thursday as LeBron James continues rehab|
|Atletico Madrid boosted as Koke thigh injury revealed to be minor|
|South Korea 2 Bahrain 1 (after extra time): Kim Jin-su seals quarter-final spot|
|AC Milan confirm Zapata thigh injury|
|I miss him a lot - Guardiola confirms ´clever´ Mendy back in Man City squad|
|Tiafoe wants LeBron meeting after run to Australian Open quarters|
|Cardiff continue to ´pray´ for Sala|
|West Ham fined over Burnley clash chaos|
|Knicks star Enes Kanter frustrated by reduced role|
|Kvitova getting back to her best, says Barty|
|Kvitova revels in first semi of ´second career´|
|Messi´s the best player in every world – Boateng dismisses past Real Madrid comments|
|Thunder frustrations continue against Renegades|
|Alonso vows to clear name in tax fraud case|
|Classy Nadal downs Tiafoe to set up Tsitsipas semi|
|Hoedt leaves Southampton for Celta Vigo on loan|
|Melbourne City 4 Western Sydney Wanderers 3: Hosts edge thriller with two goals in last six minutes|
|Wilder won´t even pick up the phone - Hearn not hopeful of AJ bout|
|Sala was on board missing plane, say French authorities|
|Arsenal´s Bellerin out for season with ACL rupture|
|Gatland waiting on ´concrete´ offers|
|Ronaldo accepts prison sentence and €18.8m fine for tax fraud|
|Tsitsipas: It was vital to back up Federer win|
|Awesome Kvitova ends Barty´s home run in Melbourne|
|CA rejects Thunder appeal for full points in abandoned Heat clash|
|Emiliano Sala: Concerns grow for Cardiff striker after plane goes missing|
|Harden unimpressed with refs in Rockets´ 76ers disappointment|
|Ronaldo arrives for sentencing in tax fraud case|
|Record-breaking evening ´one of those nights´ for Warriors star Thompson|
|Hazard still interested in Real Madrid but won´t rule out Chelsea stay|
|Collins moves past Pavlyuchenkova, into Australian Open semis|
|Kohli makes history with ICC awards sweep|
|Thompson sets NBA record with 10 straight made three-pointers to open game|
|76ers hand Rockets largest loss of season, Harden scores 37 points|