Lionel Messi won his sixth Ballin d’Or on Monday night, to put him at the top of the list for the most golden balls in football history!
The Ballon d’Or awards ceremony was held in Paris on Monday night. It is a yearly award that it’s given out by French publication, France Football. This year’s award was a two-horse race between Liverpool’s Virgil Van Dijk and Lionel Messi.
The voting system works as such. Each journalist picks their top five players for the year. Whoever is first receives five points, the second three points and third gets one point and then obviously the player with the most votes wins.
This year was one of the closest years yet. Lionel Messi just beat Van Dijk by 686 points to 679! By winning this award Messi has now set a new record for the most Ballon d’Or’s won by one player, six. Barcelona also set a new record by having the most Ballon d’Or wins from one club with 12, overtaking Real on 11.
This was to be Messi’s second player of the year award after having won the Best FIFA Men’s Player of the year award too. Once again he beat Van Dijk to this one.
Liverpool’s number four can feel hard done by not winning. He helped his side win the Champions Leauge whilst getting to the final of the Nations League. Liverpool came up short by just one point in the league last season and Van Dijk also won the PFA Player Of The Year. To add to that as well, he wasn’t dribbled past once all season!
However, individually Messi’s season has been unbelievable once again.
At the awards ceremony, there are other winners too. Megan Rapinoe won the Ballon d’Or Feminin. She helped guide the USA to winning the Women’s World Cup this summer. England’s Lucy Bronze was behind in second place. She had a brilliant year at Lyon winning the treble with them.
Alisson beat Ter Stegen and Ederson to the Yashine Trophy. It appears now that Neuer’s reign as the best keeper in the world has truly come to an end. Youngster Mathjis De Ligt was awarded the Kopa Trophy for the best under 21 footballers and this is selected by the past Ballon d’Or winners. He starred in the Champions League and got himself a move to Juventus.
With the ceremony only just finishing, odds for next years winner isn’t available just yet. However, Paddy Power does have odds on PFA Player and Young Player of the year available. Currently, Sadio Mane is leading the way at 3/1 with Kevin De Bruyne just behind at 4/1. Next year though we’re pretty certain that Messi will be up there challenging for the award once again!