Switzerland forward Xherdan Shaqiri has been a key part of the national team’s rapid evolution in the past few years.

Now playing for Stoke City in the English Premier League following a spell at Bayern Munich, Shaqiri starred as Switzerland reached the last 16 at the 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil™.

In this video the ‘Alpen-Messi’ (Messi of the Alps) tells FIFA.com his views on, among other subjects, the upcoming FIFA Ballon d’Or. He said: "I hope that one day a Swiss player can be in the final shortlist and win the Ballon d’Or.

"I’m very humble and young but I think that every player has the dream to be in contention for this award. Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo scored many goals and won titles this year; that’s why it will be difficult to displace them.

"I hope that there will be another player to challenge them, but currently only Messi and Ronaldo are on the same level. We will have to wait and see who wins. I believe, though, that Messi will be one step ahead."