Lionel Messi who left Barcelona at the beginning of the season, has become the only footballer to win the Ballon d’Or a record seven times.
He was presented with the best men footballer of the year award yesterday, Nov. 29, 2021 after winning his first international trophy for his country.
The Argentine edged out his competitors from Bayern Munich, Robert Lewandoski and the Champions league-winning duo of Chelsea, Ngolo Kante and Jorginho.
Lionel Messi had earlier been presented his best goalscorer award, Pichichi, for his performance last season at Barcelona.
“I’m really proud to win the France Football Ballon d’Or once again,” said Messi.
“It’s incredible to win it for the seventh time. I would like to thank my family, my friends and all the people who follow me and always support me, because without them I couldn’t have done it”.
Robert Lewandoski, meanwhile, went home with the best striker award at the tournament.
Lewandoski had 580 points, coming second behind Messi who had 613 points.
Leo Messi acknowledged the impact of Lewandoski. He said, “I would like to mention Robert Lewandowski, it’s been a real honour to compete with you. Everyone knows and we agree that you were the winner last year. I think France Football should award you your 2020 Ballon d’Or – you deserve it and you should have it at home”.
For the first time ever, Cristiano Ronaldo appeared outside the top 5 of the award, coming sixth behind Kante, Benzema, Jorginho, Lewandoski and Messi respectively.
Chelsea also claimed the club of the year award for having most players nominated across all of the categories.