The Ballon d’Or was given freely for the first time in two years, with Lionel Messi the best-loved to claim the award for a record 7th time at the ceremony held in Paris.
The PSG striker concluded his ceaselessness for a crucial international trophy when he supported Argentina to win the Copa America in the summer, whilst he also steered his former club Barcelona to Copa del Rey relish prior moving to the French capital in August.
Messi’s plausible closest contender for the trophy was Robert Lewandowski, who was treasured in 2020 before the awards were abandoned because of Covid-19.
Lewandowski has scored 73 goals in wholly 60 games for Bayern Munich since the start of last season, and earned FIFA’s and UEFA’s player of the year awards in 2020.
There were 14 PL players on the 30-strong shortlist for the award, counting four – Jorginho, N’Golo Kante, Mason Mount and Cesar Azpilicueta – who succoured Chelsea triumph the Champions League in May.
Ballon d’Or nominees
- Cesar Azpilicueta (Chelsea)
- Nicolo Barella (Inter Milan)
- Karim Benzema (Real Madrid)
- Leonardo Bonucci (Juventus)
- Kevin De Bruyne (Manchester City)
- Giorgio Chiellini (Juventus)
- Cristiano Ronaldo (Manchester United)
- Ruben Dias (Manchester City)
- Gianluigi Donnarumma (Paris Saint-Germain)
- Bruno Fernandes (Manchester United)
- Phil Foden (Manchester City)
- Erling Haaland (Borussia Dortmund)
- Jorginho (Chelsea)
- Harry Kane (Tottenham)
- N’Golo Kante (Chelsea)
- Simon Kjaer (AC Milan)
- Robert Lewandowski (Bayern Munich)
- Romelu Lukaku (Chelsea)
- Riyad Mahrez (Manchester City)
- Lautaro Martinez (Inter Milan)
- Kylian Mbappe (Paris Saint-Germain)
- Lionel Messi (Paris Saint-Germain)
- Luka Modric (Real Madrid)
- Gerard Moreno (Villarreal)
- Mason Mount (Chelsea)
- Neymar (Paris Saint-Germain)
- Pedri (Barcelona)
- Mohamed Salah (Liverpool)
- Raheem Sterling (Manchester City)
- Luis Suarez (Atletico Madrid)