Atletico Madrid star Arda Turan denies voting Jose Mourinho top coach
Atletico Madrid and Turkey midfielder Arda Turan says he voted for his club boss Diego Simeone to win the World Coach of the Year award and not Chelsea's Jose Mourinho, as FIFA had announced.
Simeone had been favoured by many to take the prize for his achievement in guiding financially troubled Atletico past giants Real Madrid and Barcelona to the 2013-14 La Liga title, as well as taking the team to the Champions League final.
However, Joachim Low's feat in winning the 2014 World Cup with Germany saw him take the award with 36.23 percent of the votes from international coaches and captains, and selected journalists worldwide, with Real Madrid coach Carlo Ancelotti coming second with 22.06 percent, and Simeone third on just 19.02 percent.
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FIFA's official document showing the voting for the prize has Arda giving his first choice to Mourinho, with Low in second place, and then Simeone third, but the 27-year-old immediately took to Twitter to insist that was not the case.
"About the Ballon d'Or and choosing the best coach, I have received many questions," he tweeted. "So to explain well I want to say again: when the staff asked me, I chose Simeone as the best coach and Cristiano as best player. I said it exactly like that.
"For me, Simeone is the best coach in the world. If he had won the prize I would have been as happy as if I had won it myself. I want the press, and everyone, to know this. I have explained it so that nobody is confused."
Aquellos dias los delegados cuando me preguntaban elegia Cholo Simeone mejor entranador y mejor jugador Ronaldo, lo decia exactamente asi- Arda Turan (@ArdaTuran10line) January 12, 2015
This is not the first time Mourinho has been involved in controversy over apparent differences between Ballon d'Or voting intentions and the actual vote cast.
After Spain's Vicente del Bosque won the 2012 World Coach of the Year award, Macedonia captain Goran Pandev claimed his vote had been changed and he had voted for his former Inter Milan coach.
During that episode, Mourinho himself told Portuguese TV that a number of voters had told him their ballots for him had been altered.
FIFA then reacted by releasing a copy of Pandev's voting paper, saying that it showed that the official vote submitted by the Macedonian FA had him choosing Del Bosque.