Lionel Messi wins his record 7th Ballon d’Or at a star-studded gala, he was crowned the best football player in the world last night in front of his family and a host of footballing legends and icons from past and present – Spider-Man: No Way Home stars Tom Holland and Zendaya were also present at the event.
Lionel Messi wins 2021 Ballon d’Or
The Ballon d’Or is the most prestigious individual award for footballers and is given every year by France Football to the best player in the world for that year – the winner of the award is voted for by 180 journalists from around the world as well as coaches and captains of the national teams.
Lionel Messi, who currently plays for Paris Saint-Germain after leaving Barcelona in the summer, has won the trophy 7 times (including last night’s win), the most that any footballer has ever won – Cristiano Ronaldo is right behind him with 5 Ballon d’Or wins. Messi’s previous wins came in 2019, 2015, 2012, 2011, 2010 and 2009.
Heavy favorite Bayern Munich Striker Robert Lewandowski ultimately came in runners-up, with Messi telling him in his speech that he deserved to win last year’s Ballon d’Or, which was canceled due to Covid-19. Lewandowski won the newly created Striker of the Year award instead.
Messi said: “I want to tell Robert that it is an honor for me to be up against him. You deserve your Ballon d’Or. Last year everyone agreed that you were the winner. I think France Football should give you your Ballon d’Or so you can have it as you deserve.
Chelsea’s Jorginho and N’golo Kante finished in 3rd and 5th place respectively, with Real Madrid’s Karim Benzema finishing in 4th spot.
Successful year with Argentina
Messi led Argentina to their first major international trophy since 1993, winning the Copa America title in July 2021 after defeating his teammate Neymar’s Brazil in the finals – He was the top scorer of the competition with 4 goals as well as coming in at the top of the assists charts with 5 assists. Messi was also awarded the best player of the tournament.
On top of his international success, Lionel Messi also helped Barcelona to the Copa del Rey trophy.