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When discussing the football we all know and love, how is it possible that just two players has won the Fifa best player, Ballon d’or, Uefa best player, Uefa top scorer, golden boot, and so on for the past 10 years? Could it be that quality players are no longer created or recruited? Could it be that quality players are neglected in the game? Could it be that the quality and talented footballers in the game are treated partially? What exactly has made just Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi to win these awards amongst themselves for the past 10years and counting? The only player to have come close to winning one of these awards(European golden shoe) is Luis Suarez at Liverpool.
After a long, deep thought, I realized that the painful truth is that current footballers are playing or engaging the sport for the money and not for the passion of it bar Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi.
Since the inception of the award in 1956, when it was still awarded by both FIFA and FRANCE FOOTBALL, no player has won the prestigious award more than three consecutive times, speaks volume of how strong the competition for top spot was ever since. We have lived to witness or were told stories of wonderful footballers such as the masterclass midfielder Zinedine Zidane, Iconic and clinical Brazilian strikers, Pele, Ronaldo, entertaining Ronaldinho and so many of them. These wonderful and talented footballers competed with themselves and gave their all for the award. Below is the list of ballon d’Or winners since 1956.
1956 – Stanley Matthews (England)
1957 – Alfredo Di Stefano (Spain)
1958 – Raymond Kopa (France)
1959 – Alfredo di Stefano (Spain)
1960 – Luis Suarez (Spain)
1961 – Omar Sivori (Italy)
1962 – Josef Masopust (Czechoslovakia) 1963 – Lev Yashin (Soviet Union)
1964 – Denis Law (Scotland) 1965 – Eusebio (Portugal)
1966 – Bobby Charlton (England) 1967 – Florian Albert (Hungary)
1968 – George Best (Northern Ireland) 1969 – Gianni Rivera (Italy)
1970 – Gerd Mueller (West Germany) 1971 – Johan Cruyff (Netherlands)
1972 – Franz Beckenbauer (Germany) 1973 – Johan Cruyff (Netherlands)
1974 – Johan Cruyff (Netherlands) 1975 – Oleg Blokhin (Soviet Union)
1976 – Franz Beckenbauer (West Germany) 1977 – Allan Simonsen (Denmark)
1978 – Kevin Keegan (England) 1979 – Kevin Keegan (England)
1980 – Karl-Heinz Rummenigge (West Germany) 1981 – Karl-Heinz Rummenigge (West Germany)
1982 – Paolo Rossi (Italy) 1983 – Michel Platini (France)
1984 – Michel Platini (France) 1985 – Michel Platini (France)
1986 – Igor Belanov (Soviet Union) 1987 – Ruud Gullit (Netherlands)
1988 – Marco van Basten (Netherlands) 1989 – Marco van Basten (Netherlands)
1990 – Lothar Matthaeus (Germany) 1991 – Jean-Pierre Papin (France)
1992 – Marco van Basten (Netherlands) 1993 – Roberto Baggio (Italy)
1994 – Hristo Stoichkov (Bulgaria) 1995 – George Weah (Liberia)
1996 – Matthias Sammer (Germany) 1997 – Ronaldo (Brazil)
1998 – Zinedine Zidane (France) 1999 – Rivaldo (Brazil)
2000 – Luis Figo (Portugal) 2001 – Michael Owen (England)
2002 – Ronaldo (Brazil) 2003 – Pavel Nedved (Czech Republic)
2004 – Andriy Shevchenko (Ukraine) 2005 – Ronaldinho (Brazil)
2006 – Fabio Cannavaro (Italy) 2007 – Kaka (Brazil)
2008 – Cristiano Ronaldo (Portugal) 2009 – Lionel Messi (Argentina)
2010 – Lionel Messi (Argentina) 2011 – Lionel Messi (Argentina)
2012 – Lionel Messi (Argentina) 2013 – Cristiano Ronaldo (Portugal)
2014 – Cristiano Ronaldo (Portugal) 2015 – Lionel Messi (Argentina)
2016 – Cristiano Ronaldo (Portuga* From 2010-2015 the Ballon d’Or was merged with the FIFA World Player of the Year to create the FIFA Ballon d’Or award.
Players like Neymar, Coutinho, Pogba were thought to take the football world by storm, pick up the mantle and do more than their predecessors,,painfully they are currently after the money. It pains me most to acknowledge that the most passionate and dedicated footballer still plying his talent in the game today is one that has won numerous awards in the game despite age catching up on him (Cristiano Ronaldo).
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