Ballon d'Or Nominations: Messi, Ronaldo, and Haaland Lead the Way
Lionel Messi, the esteemed Argentine forward, found himself featured among the distinguished nominees for the coveted men's Ballon d'Or trophy, a prestigious accolade announced by the venerable France Football magazine on a Wednesday.
Remarkably, Messi, a seven-time recipient of this illustrious award, graced this list while donning the colors of Inter Miami. His extraordinary leadership propelled Argentina to World Cup triumph in Qatar, marking their first conquest since 1986—a historic achievement that resonated with fans worldwide.
In a surprising twist, the renowned Portuguese football icon Cristiano Ronaldo, boasting five Ballon d'Or titles to his name, experienced a rare omission from the nominee roster. This unexpected development marked the first instance in two decades that Ronaldo did not secure a nomination for this esteemed award.
Erling Haaland, the prolific striker of Manchester City, earned a well-deserved spot among the nominees. Haaland, who clinched the UEFA Best Men's Player award the preceding season, continued to captivate football enthusiasts with his exceptional performances. Sharing the spotlight with him was Kylian Mbappe, the electrifying forward from Paris St Germain, whose undeniable talent placed him firmly on the shortlist.
On the women's front, the indefatigable Barcelona sensation Alexia Putellas, a two-time consecutive winner of the women's Ballon d'Or, notably did not receive a nomination this time around. This development set the stage for a potentially exciting race in the women's category.
Distinguished female nominees included the dynamic Chelsea duo of Sam Kerr and Millie Bright, who exhibited their prowess on the football pitch. Aitana Bonmati of Barcelona also secured a spot among the 30 female contenders, showcasing her instrumental role in Spain's recent World Cup victory.
The eagerly anticipated awards ceremony, where the finest male and female players in the world will be celebrated, is scheduled for October 30, promising to be a momentous occasion in the world of football.