Seven-time Ballon d’Or winner Messi is missing from the list of 30 nominees


Seven-time Ballon d’Or winner Lionel Messi was omitted from the list of 30 nominees for the prestigious award on Friday for the first time since 2005.

The Argentine great edged out Polish striker Robert Lewandowski for the Ballon d’Or last year but was not nominated this time after a disappointing debut season at Paris Saint-Germain.

The 35-year-old striker also won the award in 2019 – it didn’t take place in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Neymar also missed the cut this time.

Lewandowski, Kylian Mbappe, Karim Benzema, Erling Haaland and five-time winner Cristiano Ronaldo were all included, as were Mohamed Salah, Sadio Mane, Kevin De Bruyne, Harry Kane and Son Heung-min.

Alexia Putellas, Ada Hegerberg, Sam Kerr and Vivianne Miedema were on the list of 20 nominated women. American players Alex Morgan, Catarina Macario and Trinity Rodman were also named.

The men’s list includes six Manchester City players: Phil Foden, Joao Cancelo, De Bruyne, Riyad Mahrez, Bernardo Silva and new signing Haaland (formerly Borussia Dortmund).

Liverpool also have six nominees: Trent Alexander-Arnold, Luis Diaz, Fabinho, Darwin Nunez, Salah and Virgil van Dijk.

Mane, who helped Senegal win their first African Cup before leaving Liverpool for Bayern Munich, is included, as is Bayern team-mate Joshua Kimmich.

Change of voting number

Benzema leads a group of six Real Madrid players. The others are Casemiro, Thibaut Courtois, Luka Modric, Vinicius Junior and new signing Antonio Rudiger.

The other nominated players are Sebastien Haller (Ajax), Rafael Leao and Mike Maignan (both from AC Milan), Christopher Nkunku (Leipzig) and Dusan Vlahovic (Juventus).

The prize will be awarded on October 17.

Among the changes announced in March, the award is now based on performance over a regular European season, rather than a calendar year. A reduction in the number of voters was among other changes, in an effort to streamline the process.

Voters will also no longer consider a player’s professional achievements.

France Football magazine has awarded the prize to men every year since 1956 and to women every year since 2018 – when Hegerberg became the first female winner – although both were canceled in 2020 due to the pandemic.

Putellas became the third winner of the women’s award last year. Her teammate in Barcelona and Spain, Aitana Bonmati, was also nominated.

Millie Bright, Lucy Bronze and Beth Mead, who helped England win the European Championship, have been included.

France has four players on the list: Selma Bacha, Kadidiatou Diani, Marie-Antoinette Katoto and Wendie Renard.

The other women nominated are Christiane Endler, Lena Oberdorf, Asisat Oshoala, Alexandra Popp and Fridolina Rolfo.

cbc sp

Back to top button