The Georgian national team and Napoli winger Khvicha Kvaratskhelia was ranked 17th on Monday for the rankings of the Men's Ballon d'Or award, presented annually by France Football to the best player of the year.
The 67th ceremony of the awards, hosted in Paris, saw Kvaratskhelia in attendance with his newlywed wife Nitsa Tavadze.
The Georgian was ranked ahead of Real Madrid’s Jude Bellingham, Harry Kane of Bayern and Lautaro Martínez of Argentina, who became the world champion with the national team last year.
The 22-year-old footballer’s nomination followed his debut season for Napoli that helped the Italian club in their winning run in Serie A with his match-winning contributions, leading to the team’s first title in 33 years.
He also became the Most Valuable Player of the series and received three Player of the Month awards by EA Sports, a division of Electronic Arts that develops and publishes sports video games and partners the Serie A, setting a new all-time record in the history of the Italian championship.
Kvaratskhelia became the first Georgian to be recognised as the best player in a top European championship.