Who will be considered the best player in the world this year? Lionel Messi? Cristiano Ronaldo? Or maybe we will see another player emerging between these two GOATS as Modric did in 2018?

Last year this award was kept in the drawer due to the impact of Covid-19 pandemic crisis on the industry. But here we go again.

The Ballon d’Or is an annual football award presented by French news magazine France Football, and it has been awarded since 1956.

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Between 2010 and 2015, an agreement was made with FIFA, and the award was temporarily merged with the FIFA World Player of the Year (founded in 1991) and known as the FIFA Ballon d’Or. But this partnership ended in 2016, and the award reverted to the Ballon d’Or, while FIFA also reverted to its own separate annual award The Best FIFA Men’s Player.

Who is in lead?

Here is the ranking of the players with most Ballon d’Or, with the Argentinian star from PSG leading the table with 6 trophies (2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2015, 2019). Messi is a strong candidate after winning Copa America, but there is a strong competition this year for this award.

Behind Messi is Cristiano Ronaldo. The Portuguese star had already collected 5 Ballon d’Or (2008, 2012, 2014, 2016, 2017) and wouldn’t mind win another time to reach the archirival Messi. But odds are not on his side.

From now on we will see on the ranking players that are already retired.

With 3 Ballon d’Or, we have 3 players: the Dutch historic strikers Marco Van Basten (1988, 1989, 1992) and Johan Cruyff (1971, 1973, 1974) and the French Michel Platini.

And then we have a full hand of player with 2 Ballon d’Or: Ronaldo (1997, 2002), Karl-Heinz Rummenigge (1980, 1981)
Kevin Keegan (1978, 1979), Franz Beckenbauer (1972, 1976) and Alfredo Di Stéfano (1957, 1959).

Top 10 Players with Most Ballon d’Or

6 times
Lionel Messi (2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2015, 2019)

5 times
Cristiano Ronaldo (2008, 2012, 2014, 2016, 2017)

3 times
Marco Van Basten (1988, 1989, 1992)
Michel Platini (1983, 1983, 1984)
Johan Cruyff (1971, 1973, 1974)

2 times
Ronaldo (1997, 2002)
Karl-Heinz Rummenigge (1980, 1981)
Kevin Keegan (1978, 1979)
Franz Beckenbauer (1972, 1976)
Alfredo Di Stéfano (1957, 1959)