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Michel Platini, pictured with the 1985 Ballon d'Or, won the award three times in succession.

The Ballon d'Or (French pronunciation: ​[balɔ̃ dɔʁ]; "Golden Ball"), is an annual association football award presented by France Football. It has been awarded since 1956, although between 2010 and 2015, an agreement was made with FIFA and the award was temporarily merged with the FIFA World Player of the Year, and known as the FIFA Ballon d'Or. Conceived by sports writer Gabriel Hanot, the Ballon d'Or award honours the male player deemed to have performed the best over the previous year, based on voting by football journalists. Originally, only European players were in contention for the Ballon d'Or: in 1995 the award was expanded to include all players at European clubs[1][2] and in 2007 to all players from around the world.[3]

Contents

HistoryEdit

Stanley Matthews of Blackpool was the inaugural winner of the Ballon d'Or.[4] Prior to 1995, the award was often known in English language media as the European Footballer of the Year award. Milan's George Weah, the only African recipient, became the first non-European to win the award in the year the rules of eligibility were changed.[2] Ronaldo of Internazionale became the first South American winner two years later.[2] Three players have won the award three times each: Johan Cruyff of Ajax and Barcelona, Michel Platini of Juventus and Marco van Basten of Milan. With seven awards each, Dutch and German players won the most Ballons d'Or. Spanish club Barcelona had the most winners.[5]

Between 2010 and 2015 inclusive the award was merged with a similar award, the FIFA World Player of the Year award, to create the FIFA Ballon d'Or, which was awarded to the world's best male player, before FIFA and France Football broke the merging agreement.[6] After 2011, UEFA created the UEFA Best Player in Europe Award to maintain the format of the original Ballon d'Or.[7]

WinnersEdit

Key
  Indicates player also won the FIFA World Player of the Year (1991–2009) or The Best FIFA Men's Player (2016–) in the same year
 
Cristiano Ronaldo (left) and Lionel Messi, won four and five awards respectively.
Year Rank Player Team Points
Ballon d'Or (1956–2009)
1956 1st   Stanley Matthews   Blackpool 47
2nd   Alfredo Di Stéfano   Real Madrid 44
3rd   Raymond Kopa   Real Madrid 33
1957 1st   Alfredo Di Stéfano[note 1]   Real Madrid 72
2nd   Billy Wright   Wolverhampton Wanderers 19
3rd   Duncan Edwards   Manchester United 16
  Raymond Kopa   Real Madrid
1958 1st   Raymond Kopa   Real Madrid 71
2nd   Helmut Rahn   Rot-Weiss Essen 40
3rd   Just Fontaine   Stade de Reims 23
1959 1st   Alfredo Di Stéfano   Real Madrid 80
2nd   Raymond Kopa   Real Madrid 42
3rd   John Charles   Juventus 24
1960 1st   Luis Suárez   Barcelona 54
2nd   Ferenc Puskás   Real Madrid 37
3rd   Uwe Seeler   Hamburg 33
1961 1st   Omar Sívori[note 2]   Juventus 46
2nd   Luis Suárez   Internazionale 40
3rd   Johnny Haynes   Fulham 22
1962 1st   Josef Masopust   Dukla Prague 65
2nd   Eusébio   Benfica 53
3rd   Karl-Heinz Schnellinger   Köln 33
1963 1st   Lev Yashin   Dynamo Moscow 73
2nd   Gianni Rivera   Milan 53
3rd   Jimmy Greaves   Tottenham Hotspur 33
1964 1st   Denis Law   Manchester United 61
2nd   Luis Suárez   Internazionale 43
3rd   Amancio   Real Madrid 38
1965 1st   Eusébio   Benfica 67
2nd   Giacinto Facchetti   Internazionale 59
3rd   Luis Suárez   Internazionale 45
1966 1st   Bobby Charlton   Manchester United 81
2nd   Eusébio   Benfica 80
3rd   Franz Beckenbauer   Bayern Munich 59
1967 1st   Flórián Albert   Ferencváros 68
2nd   Bobby Charlton   Manchester United 40
3rd   Jimmy Johnstone   Celtic 39
1968 1st   George Best   Manchester United 61
2nd   Bobby Charlton   Manchester United 53
3rd   Dragan Džajić   Red Star Belgrade 46
1969 1st   Gianni Rivera   Milan 83
2nd   Luigi Riva   Cagliari 79
3rd   Gerd Müller   Bayern Munich 38
1970 1st   Gerd Müller   Bayern Munich 77
2nd   Bobby Moore   West Ham United 70
3rd   Luigi Riva   Cagliari 65
1971 1st   Johan Cruyff   Ajax 116
2nd   Sandro Mazzola   Internazionale 57
3rd   George Best   Manchester United 56
1972 1st   Franz Beckenbauer   Bayern Munich 81
2nd   Gerd Müller   Bayern Munich 79
  Günter Netzer   Borussia Mönchengladbach
1973 1st   Johan Cruyff[note 3]   Barcelona 96
2nd   Dino Zoff   Juventus 47
3rd   Gerd Müller   Bayern Munich 44
1974 1st   Johan Cruyff   Barcelona 116
2nd   Franz Beckenbauer   Bayern Munich 105
3rd   Kazimierz Deyna   Legia Warsaw 35
1975 1st   Oleg Blokhin   Dynamo Kyiv 122
2nd   Franz Beckenbauer   Bayern Munich 42
3rd   Johan Cruyff   Barcelona 27
1976 1st   Franz Beckenbauer   Bayern Munich 91
2nd   Rob Rensenbrink   Anderlecht 75
3rd   Ivo Viktor   Dukla Prague 52
1977 1st   Allan Simonsen   Borussia Mönchengladbach 74
2nd   Kevin Keegan[note 4]   Hamburg 71
3rd   Michel Platini   Nancy 70
1978 1st   Kevin Keegan   Hamburg 87
2nd   Hans Krankl   Barcelona 81
3rd   Rob Rensenbrink   Anderlecht 50
1979 1st   Kevin Keegan   Hamburg 118
2nd   Karl-Heinz Rummenigge   Bayern Munich 52
3rd   Ruud Krol   Ajax 41
1980 1st   Karl-Heinz Rummenigge   Bayern Munich 122
2nd   Bernd Schuster   Barcelona 34
3rd   Michel Platini   Saint-Étienne 33
1981 1st   Karl-Heinz Rummenigge   Bayern Munich 106
2nd   Paul Breitner   Bayern Munich 64
3rd   Bernd Schuster   Barcelona 39
1982 1st   Paolo Rossi   Juventus 115
2nd   Alain Giresse   Bordeaux 64
3rd   Zbigniew Boniek   Juventus 39
1983 1st   Michel Platini   Juventus 110
2nd   Kenny Dalglish   Liverpool 26
3rd   Allan Simonsen   Vejle 25
1984 1st   Michel Platini   Juventus 110
2nd   Jean Tigana   Bordeaux 57
3rd   Preben Elkjær   Hellas Verona 48
1985 1st   Michel Platini   Juventus 127
2nd   Preben Elkjær   Hellas Verona 71
3rd   Bernd Schuster   Barcelona 46
1986 1st   Igor Belanov   Dynamo Kyiv 84
2nd   Gary Lineker[note 5]   Barcelona 62
3rd   Emilio Butragueño   Real Madrid 59
1987 1st   Ruud Gullit[note 6]   Milan 106
2nd   Paulo Futre[note 7]   Atlético Madrid 91
3rd   Emilio Butragueño   Real Madrid 61
1988 1st   Marco van Basten   Milan 129
2nd   Ruud Gullit   Milan 88
3rd   Frank Rijkaard[note 8]   Milan 45
1989 1st   Marco van Basten   Milan 129
2nd   Franco Baresi   Milan 80
3rd   Frank Rijkaard   Milan 43
1990 1st   Lothar Matthäus   Internazionale 137
2nd   Salvatore Schillaci   Juventus 84
3rd   Andreas Brehme   Internazionale 68
1991 1st   Jean-Pierre Papin   Marseille 141
2nd   Dejan Savićević   Red Star Belgrade 42
  Darko Pančev   Red Star Belgrade
  Lothar Matthäus   Internazionale
1992 1st   Marco van Basten    Milan 98
2nd   Hristo Stoichkov   Barcelona 80
3rd   Dennis Bergkamp   Ajax 53
1993 1st   Roberto Baggio    Juventus 142
2nd   Dennis Bergkamp   Internazionale 83
3rd   Eric Cantona   Manchester United 34
1994 1st   Hristo Stoichkov   Barcelona 210
2nd   Roberto Baggio   Juventus 136
3rd   Paolo Maldini   Milan 109
1995 1st   George Weah [note 9]   Milan 144
2nd   Jürgen Klinsmann   Bayern Munich 108
3rd   Jari Litmanen   Ajax 67
1996 1st   Matthias Sammer   Borussia Dortmund 144
2nd   Ronaldo[note 10]   Barcelona 143
3rd   Alan Shearer   Newcastle United 107
1997 1st   Ronaldo [note 11]   Internazionale 222
2nd   Predrag Mijatović   Real Madrid 68
3rd   Zinedine Zidane   Juventus 63
1998 1st   Zinedine Zidane    Juventus 244
2nd   Davor Šuker   Real Madrid 68
3rd   Ronaldo   Internazionale 66
1999 1st   Rivaldo    Barcelona 219
2nd   David Beckham   Manchester United 154
3rd   Andriy Shevchenko   Milan 64
2000 1st   Luís Figo[note 12]   Real Madrid 197
2nd   Zinedine Zidane   Juventus 181
3rd   Andriy Shevchenko   Milan 85
2001 1st   Michael Owen   Liverpool 176
2nd   Raúl   Real Madrid 140
3rd   Oliver Kahn   Bayern Munich 114
2002 1st   Ronaldo [note 13]   Real Madrid 169
2nd   Roberto Carlos   Real Madrid 145
3rd   Oliver Kahn   Bayern Munich 110
2003 1st   Pavel Nedvěd   Juventus 190
2nd   Thierry Henry   Arsenal 128
3rd   Paolo Maldini   Milan 123
2004 1st   Andriy Shevchenko   Milan 175
2nd   Deco[note 14]   Porto 139
3rd   Ronaldinho   Barcelona 133
2005 1st   Ronaldinho    Barcelona 225
2nd   Frank Lampard   Chelsea 148
3rd   Steven Gerrard   Liverpool 142
2006 1st   Fabio Cannavaro [note 15]   Real Madrid 173
2nd   Gianluigi Buffon   Juventus 124
3rd   Thierry Henry   Arsenal 121
2007 1st   Kaká    Milan 444
2nd   Cristiano Ronaldo   Manchester United 277
3rd   Lionel Messi   Barcelona 255
2008 1st   Cristiano Ronaldo    Manchester United 446
2nd   Lionel Messi   Barcelona 281
3rd   Fernando Torres   Liverpool 179
2009 1st   Lionel Messi    Barcelona 473
2nd   Cristiano Ronaldo[note 16]   Real Madrid 233
3rd   Xavi   Barcelona 170
FIFA Ballon d'Or (2010–2015)
2010 1st   Lionel Messi   Barcelona 22.65%
2nd   Andrés Iniesta   Barcelona 17.36%
3rd   Xavi   Barcelona 16.48%
2011 1st   Lionel Messi   Barcelona 47.88%
2nd   Cristiano Ronaldo   Real Madrid 21.60%
3rd   Xavi   Barcelona 9.23%
2012 1st   Lionel Messi   Barcelona 41.60%
2nd   Cristiano Ronaldo   Real Madrid 23.68%
3rd   Andrés Iniesta   Barcelona 10.91%
2013 1st   Cristiano Ronaldo   Real Madrid 27.99%
2nd   Lionel Messi   Barcelona 24.72%
3rd   Franck Ribéry   Bayern Munich 23.36%
2014 1st   Cristiano Ronaldo   Real Madrid 37.66%
2nd   Lionel Messi   Barcelona 15.76%
3rd   Manuel Neuer   Bayern Munich 15.72%
2015 1st   Lionel Messi   Barcelona 41.33%
2nd   Cristiano Ronaldo   Real Madrid 27.76%
3rd   Neymar   Barcelona 7.86%
Ballon d'Or (2016–present)
2016 1st   Cristiano Ronaldo    Real Madrid 745
2nd   Lionel Messi   Barcelona 316
3rd   Antoine Griezmann   Atlético Madrid 198

Wins by playerEdit

 
Johan Cruyff with the Ballon d'Or in 1971

One-time winners are only included if they have also finished 2nd or 3rd in another year.

Player 1st 2nd 3rd
  Lionel Messi[note 17] 5 (2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2015) 4 (2008, 2013, 2014, 2016) 1 (2007)
  Cristiano Ronaldo[note 18] 4 (2008, 2013, 2014, 2016) 5 (2007, 2009, 2011, 2012, 2015)
  Michel Platini 3 (1983, 1984, 1985) 2 (1977, 1980)
  Johan Cruyff 3 (1971, 1973, 1974) 1 (1975)
  Marco van Basten 3 (1988, 1989, 1992)
  Franz Beckenbauer 2 (1972, 1976) 2 (1974, 1975) 1 (1966)
  Ronaldo 2 (1997, 2002) 1 (1996) 1 (1998)
  Alfredo Di Stéfano 2 (1957, 1959) 1 (1956)
  Kevin Keegan 2 (1978, 1979) 1 (1977)
  Karl-Heinz Rummenigge 2 (1980, 1981) 1 (1979)
  Luis Suárez 1 (1960) 2 (1961, 1964) 1 (1965)
  Eusébio 1 (1965) 2 (1962, 1966)
  Bobby Charlton 1 (1966) 2 (1967, 1968)
  Raymond Kopa 1 (1958) 1 (1959) 2 (1956, 1957)
  Gerd Müller 1 (1970) 1 (1972) 2 (1969, 1973)
  Zinedine Zidane 1 (1998) 1 (2000) 1 (1997)
  Gianni Rivera 1 (1969) 1 (1963)
  Ruud Gullit 1 (1987) 1 (1988)
  Lothar Matthäus 1 (1990) 1 (1991)
  Roberto Baggio 1 (1993) 1 (1994)
  Hristo Stoichkov 1 (1994) 1 (1992)
  Andriy Shevchenko 1 (2004) 2 (1999, 2000)
  George Best 1 (1968) 1 (1971)
  Allan Simonsen 1 (1977) 1 (1983)
  Ronaldinho 1 (2005) 1 (2004)

Wins by countryEdit

Country Players Total
  Germany 5 7
  Netherlands 3 7
  France 4 6
  Portugal 3 6
  Italy 5 5
  Brazil 4 5
  England 4 5
  Argentina 1 5
  Soviet Union 3 3
  Spain 2 3
  Czech Republic 2 2
  Bulgaria 1 1
  Denmark 1 1
  Hungary 1 1
  Liberia 1 1
  Northern Ireland 1 1
  Scotland 1 1
  Ukraine 1 1

Wins by clubEdit

Club Players Total
  Barcelona 6 11
  Real Madrid 6 9
  Juventus 6 8
  Milan 6 8
  Bayern Munich 3 5
  Manchester United 4 4
  Dynamo Kyiv 2 2
  Internazionale 2 2
  Hamburg 1 2
  Ajax 1 1
  Benfica 1 1
  Blackpool 1 1
  Borussia Dortmund 1 1
  Borussia Mönchengladbach 1 1
  Dukla Prague 1 1
  Dynamo Moscow 1 1
  Ferencváros 1 1
  Liverpool 1 1
  Marseille 1 1

Additional awardsEdit

A special Ballon d'Or, under the name Super Ballon d'Or, was awarded to Alfredo Di Stéfano in 1989, after he surpassed Johan Cruyff and Michel Platini in France Football's voting.[10] A decade later, France Football elected Pelé the Football Player of the Century after consulting their former Ballon d'Or recipients. Among the 34 previous winners, 30 cast their votes; Stanley Matthews, Omar Sívori and George Best abstained, and Lev Yashin had died. Each voter was allotted five votes worth up to five points; however, Di Stéfano only chose a first place, Platini a first and second place, and George Weah two players for fifth place. Pelé was named the greatest by 17 voters, receiving almost double the number of points earned by the runner-up, Diego Maradona.[11]

Football Player of the Century
Player Pts 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th
  Pelé (BRA) 122 17 5 4 2 1
  Diego Maradona (ARG) 65 3 6 5 5 1
  Johan Cruyff (NED) 62 1 4 7 9 2
  Alfredo Di Stéfano (ESP) 44 4 3 3 1 1
  Michel Platini (FRA) 40 1 5 1 3 6

To coincide with the 60th anniversary of the Ballon d'Or in 2016, France Football published a reevaluation of the awards presented before 1995, when only European players were eligible to win the award. 12 out of the 39 Ballons d'Or presented during this time period would have been awarded to South American players; in addition to Pelé and Diego Maradona, Garrincha, Mario Kempes, and Romário were retrospectively recognized as worthy winners. The original recipients, however, remain unchanged.[12] Maradona and Pelé received honorary Ballons d'Or for their services to football in 1996 and 2013, respectively.[13][14]

Le nouveau palmarès (the new winners)
Year Original Alternative
1958   Raymond Kopa (FRA)   Pelé (BRA)
1959   Alfredo Di Stéfano (ESP)   Pelé (BRA)
1960   Luis Suárez (ESP)   Pelé (BRA)
1961   Omar Sívori (ITA)   Pelé (BRA)
1962   Josef Masopust (TCH)   Garrincha (BRA)
1963   Lev Yashin (URS)   Pelé (BRA)
1964   Denis Law (SCO)   Pelé (BRA)
1970   Gerd Müller (FRG)   Pelé (BRA)
1978   Kevin Keegan (ENG)   Mario Kempes (ARG)
1986   Igor Belanov (URS)   Diego Maradona (ARG)
1990   Lothar Matthäus (GER)   Diego Maradona (ARG)
1994   Hristo Stoichkov (BUL)   Romário (BRA)

See alsoEdit

NotesEdit

  1. ^ Born in Argentina, Di Stéfano acquired Spanish citizenship in 1956 and went on to play for the Spanish national football team.
  2. ^ Born in Argentina, Sívori acquired Italian citizenship in 1961 and went on to play for the Italian national football team.
  3. ^ Cruyff was signed by Barcelona from Ajax midway through 1973.
  4. ^ Keegan was signed by Hamburg from Liverpool midway through 1977.
  5. ^ Lineker was signed by Barcelona from Everton midway through 1986.
  6. ^ Gullit was signed by Milan from PSV Eindhoven midway through 1987.
  7. ^ Futre was signed by Atlético Madrid from Porto midway through 1987.
  8. ^ Rijkaard was signed by Milan from Real Zaragoza midway through 1988.
  9. ^ Weah was signed by Milan from Paris Saint-Germain midway through 1995.
  10. ^ Ronaldo was signed by Barcelona from PSV Eindhoven midway through 1996.
  11. ^ Ronaldo was signed by Internazionale from Barcelona midway through 1997.
  12. ^ Figo was signed by Real Madrid from Barcelona midway through 2000.
  13. ^ Ronaldo was signed by Real Madrid from Internazionale midway through 2002.
  14. ^ Deco was signed by Barcelona from Porto midway through 2004.
  15. ^ Cannavaro was signed by Real Madrid from Juventus midway through 2006.
  16. ^ Cristiano Ronaldo was signed by Real Madrid from Manchester United midway through 2009.
  17. ^ Messi won four FIFA Ballon d'Or (2010, 2011, 2012, 2015) and twice finished in second place (2013, 2014).[8][9]
  18. ^ Cristiano Ronaldo won two FIFA Ballons d'Or (2013, 2014) and thrice finished in second place (2011, 2012, 2015).[8][9]

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "Matthews wins first Golden Ball". BBC Sport. British Broadcasting Corporation. 1 December 2008. Retrieved 4 December 2008. 
  2. ^ a b c "The 1990s Ballon d'Or winners". BBC Sport. British Broadcasting Corporation. 1 December 2008. Retrieved 4 December 2008. 
  3. ^ "Kaka wins 2007 award". BBC Sport. British Broadcasting Corporation. 1 December 2008. Retrieved 4 December 2008. 
  4. ^ "Ronaldo joins legendary list". BBC Sport. British Broadcasting Corporation. 1 December 2008. Retrieved 4 December 2008. 
  5. ^ "Rankings by Wins". Rec.Sport.Soccer Statistics Foundation. 9 October 2008. Retrieved 4 December 2008. 
  6. ^ "The FIFA Ballon d'Or is born". FIFA.com. Fédération Internationale de Football Association. 5 July 2010. Retrieved 4 December 2012. 
  7. ^ "How the award came about". UEFA.com. Union of European Football Associations. 9 August 2011. Retrieved 6 November 2011. 
  8. ^ a b "La liste complête des lauréats du Ballon d'or, de 1956 à nos jours". France Football. Retrieved 14 January 2016. 
  9. ^ a b "FIFA Awards – World Player of the Year". Rec.Sport.Soccer Statistics Foundation. 12 February 2015. Retrieved 14 January 2016. 
  10. ^ "On this day, Di Stéfano won the Super Ballon d'Or". RealMadrid.com. 24 December 2015. Retrieved 13 January 2016. 
  11. ^ Stokkermans, Karel (23 December 2015). "France Football's Football Player of the Century". Rec.Sport.Soccer Statistics Foundation. Archived from the original on 30 January 2010. Retrieved 13 January 2016. 
  12. ^ Marchand, Thierry (December 2015). "On a refait le palmarès". France Football. Retrieved 13 January 2016. 
  13. ^ "Maradona receives honorary award". BBC Sport. 1 December 2008. Retrieved 13 January 2016. 
  14. ^ "Pele receives FIFA Ballon d'Or Prix d'Honneur". FIFA.com. 13 January 2014. Retrieved 14 January 2016. 

External linksEdit