The race for FIFA Ballon d’Or heats up as we are getting closer to the day on which the winner is going to be announced. Unlike the previous years this time around we won’t have a three-man shortlist. All of the nominees have a chance of winning it, but the favorites are like it was the case in every year since 2007, Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi.
The ceremony will most likely be held in London on 9th of January 2017. Early favorite certainly is Cristiano Ronaldo. Despite the fact that there won’t be shorter list his biggest rivals will definitely be Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez. Ronaldo is being favored both by fans and pundits because of his exploits with Real Madrid and Portugal. During the last season, he has won both Champions League and European Championship and scored 51 goals overall. Suarez was La Ligas best scorer while Messi won the Best Player award at 2016 Copa America.
While this achievement would normally be enough for someone to secure Balon d’Or, they are not sufficient for Ronaldo. Main reason is his bad start to the 2016/2017 season. This is statistically his worst season start in Real Madrid shirt. He was even booed by his own fans during a recent match against Athletic Bilbao for his obvious selfishness. We are used to seeing this from him, but that game was something special even for him.
If this all wasn’t putting enough pressure on Portugal superstar and putting his fourth Balon d’Or in jeopardy, he has some more coming. During a recent on-line survey on marca.com, 58% of voters gave their vote to Messi. Only 26% voted for Cristiano while Griezman took the third spot with poor 3%. All of this wouldn’t come as a surprise, but Marca is traditionally close to Real Madrid, and the majority of its readers are Madrid fans.
Another hit in the face of Cristiano Ronaldo, but we are sure he will give his answer on the field.
Also read: Cristiano Ronaldo Mocked by Internet Trolls
In the last six years, Messi won Balon d’Or four times while Ronaldo took the prestigious prize on two occasions.