Ballon d’Or is the next big thing in the world of football. Football fans around the world are waiting desperately to know who the football fraternity believes to be the best player in the world in the calendar year. However, contrary to popular beliefs, here are a few reasons why Cristiano Ronaldo could go on to win the coveted award this year.
His long-time rival Lionel Messi has already been adjudged The Best Men’s Player of the Year and is even one of the favourites to win the Ballon d’Or award along with Dutch star Virgil van Dijk.
As a five-time winner of the coveted award, one just cannot ignore Cristiano Ronaldo’s candidature.
Here are a few reasons why CR7 might just go on to win the 2019 Ballon d’Or:
Forget everything else. In simple words, Ballon d’Or is given to the best player in the world- no team records and titles but a player whose individual stats are far better than the rest is given preference for the award. However, team records may strengthen one’s case but that is not the first criterion.
It is worth remembering that it was for this very reason that Ronaldo was chosen over Franck Ribery way back in 2013 despite Ronaldo not being able to be a part of a major title-winning side.
By that logic, Ronaldo will present a strong case for himself having scored 28 goals from 43 matches last season for Juventus. For his national team, Ronaldo netted as many as 14 goals in just 10 matches and has successfully led them to European qualification. He also scored in crucial moments of the UEFA Nations League-winning campaign.
Domestic title with Juventus
Juventus have been so good in their domestic league Serie A that one often underestimates their season winning run year after year. For the uninitiated, Juventus have been continuously winning the Serie A title since 2012 and their dominance in the league has only got better with the addition of former Real Madrid superstar Cristiano Ronaldo. Ronaldo was superb for the Old Lady in their yet another league winning season. He netted 28 times across competitions leading his side to a record eighth title in a row.
A bizarre point, we agree! However, the Ballon d’Or is often criticised and labelled as nothing other than a publicity stunt because of the numerous occasions a player has been given the award or even finished runners up simply because he had a better reputation.
Let’s cut back to 2010. Wesley Sneijder was the leading goal scorer for Inter Milan- a team that had gone on to complete the treble that year. He even helped his national team Netherlands reach the FIFA World Cup final but when it came to the award it was given to Lionel Messi, who had nothing to show in comparison to Sneijder that year.
A few years later, the same saga was repeated but this time it was in the favour of Cristiano Ronaldo. Ronaldo won the Ballon d’Or beating a contender in Franck Ribery who had helped Bayern Munich complete a treble and yet ended the second best.
In 2014, German goalkeeper Manuel Neuer came third despite being one of the best in the business and the star of the FIFA World Cup 2014. Make no mistake, in Neuer’s case, stats were misleading and did no justice to his skills on display between the poles and showed how goalkeepers (and it applies for defenders as well) are still not given the respect they deserve. Consequently, strikers Ronaldo and Messi finished first and second respectively.
While Messi and Ronaldo share a similar kind of reputation, Messi yet again failed to win a major trophy with his national team while Ronaldo was successful in leading Portugal to Nations League title.
So, all in all, Ronaldo fans should not be disappointed because you never know, CR7 might still be awarded his sixth Ballon d’Or this year.