The Ballon d’Or will soon return to crown the best footballer in 2017.
Note; it is just the Ballon d’Or. The award has no affiliation with FIFA following the split between France Football Magazine and world football’s governing body after their merge in 2010. In that regard, FIFA has come up with its very own revamping of the FIFA Player of the Year award, now called the FIFA Football Awards, to reward the finest players on the planet.
It had its inaugural edition held in Zurich on January 9, 2017, where Cristiano Ronaldo was crowned The Best FIFA Men’s Player of the Year. Now, France Football has resorted to the old format for which the winner of the Ballon d’Or was determined.
The selection is done by a panel of judges comprising of 173 journalists selected from all over the world. The full list of voting results by country is then released in the magazine at a set date, usually in December.
What is the Ballon d’Or 2017 date?
The winner for the 2017 Ballon d’Or will be revealed on Thursday, December 7 and will grace the cover of France Football magazine’s special edition.
13h45 ET/18h45 GMT
= Ceremony start-time
13h58 ET/18h58 GMT
= #BallondOr winner announced!
— CRonaldoDaily.com (@BreatheRonaldo) December 7, 2017
What is the Ballon d’Or 2017 shortlist?
On October 9, 2017, France Football Magazine released a list of 30 nominees including last year’s winner Cristiano Ronaldo to contest for the prestigious Ballon d’Or award. However, prior to this, we at C. Ronaldo Daily also came up with our very own comprehensive list of 9 other players we believe will rival the Portuguese superstar who, yet again, happens to be the favorite in the upcoming edition.
The 32-year-old Portuguese himself has named four players whom he believes will pose competition for him in his quest for a second successive Ballon d’Or. According to him his eternal-nemesis, Lionel Messi, alongside Neymar Jr, Gonzalo Higuain, and Robert Lewandowski fit the bill.
Now, let us take a look at Team CRD‘s Top 10 potential rivals to compete against Cristiano Ronaldo for the 2017 Ballon d’Or.
10. Harry Kane
The English forward, despite his poor start to the 2016/2017 season, hit the ground running and contributed massively to Tottenham ending up as runners-up in the Premier League. The highlight of his season was definitely the performance he put in after recovering from an injury many thought had ruled him out of the season.
In his first start upon returning, Kane scored his 20th goal in the league against Bournemouth. He then went on to score in his side’s 4-2 defeat to Chelsea in the FA Cup semi-final at Wembley in the subsequent game.
With two games remaining in the Premiership, the 24-year-old forward banged in a combined seven goals in the 6:1 thrashing of Leicester and Spurs’ 7:1 demolition of Hull City. Kane, as a result, pipped favorite Romelu Lukaku to become the top-scorer and eventually secured his second successive PFA Golden Boot award with 29 goals in 30 games.
Nonetheless, his display in the UEFA Champions League was nothing to write home about as his team failed to progress from the group stage. Harry Kane scored thrice in two outings for the North London club in the campaign and later revealed his desire to emulate Cristiano Ronaldo and scoop France Football’s golden prize, one day.
The Tottenham Hotspur forward has carried over the fine form he enoyed in the 2016/2017 season into the new season and is already making waves in both the Premiership and the UEFA Champions League. The 24-year-old has scored nine times in nine domestic outings and five in three in the European competition.
9. Robert Lewandowski
After finishing the 2015/2016 season as the Bundesliga’s top-goalscorer, many had high hopes for the Polish striker going into the 2016/2017 season. The 28-year-old had established himself as a proven goalscorer for Bayern Munich since joining from Borussia Dortmund in 2014.
Nonetheless, a rare ineptitude in front of goal saw him losing the top-goalscorer accolade to former teammate Aubameyang (31) by just a goal in the just ended season. Yet, the Polish striker was adjudged the best player of the 2016/2017 Bundesliga season after his goals fired the Bavarians to a fifth successive league title.
His tally in the Champions League was also very impressive as he finished joint-third with Edinson Cavani with eight goals.
The Polish skipper has scored a total of 18 goals in 18 matches across all competitions for both club and country since the start of the 2017/2018 season.
8. Kylian Mbappe
It may be too soon for this lad to make a substantive advancement towards winning the Ballon d’Or but if he continues threading on the path he’s on, it won’t take long for him to bag home his first. Since bursting onto the scenes, the 18-year-old’s ascendancy in world football has been very rapid.
His goals helped Monaco to its first Ligue one trophy in 17 years and consequently, the semi-final of the UEFA Champions League only to be eliminated by an almost impenetrable Juventus side. His outstanding performance saw him amassing 26 goals in 44 appearances across all competitions. Kylian Mbappe finished the 2016/2017 season as Ligue 1’s Best Young Player.
Since joining PSG this summer, the 2017 Golden Boy has only managed four goals in 11 appearances.
7. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang
Aubameyang was one of the standout performers for Borussia Dortmund in the 2016/2017 season. His efficiency in front goal resulted in him accumulating a staggering total of 40 goals in 46 appearances. The Gabonese forward was named the Bundesliga top-goalscorer after scoring 31 times in 32 matches.
He also finished as the fifth top-goalscorer in the UEFA Champions League with seven goals. In terms of collective honors, Aubameyang won the DFB Pokal with Dortmund after their 2-1 victory over Eintracht Frankfurt.
The Gabonese star has so far scored 15 goals in 15 appearances in the 2017/2018 season.
6. Sergio Ramos
He may not have many goals to his name but when he does score, it is more often than not a vital one. The Real Madrid captain played a very crucial role in his side’s La Liga heroics as well as the back-to-back win of the UEFA Champions League title.
Unlike years past, the nominations for the Ballon d’Or have favored players who end up scoring the most goals but if general performance is perused, Sergio Ramos definitely deserves a spot in the Top 10.
5. Edison Cavani
For one man to single-handedly score 49 goals in 50 appearances is very special. Although his club suffered a coup at the hands of Monaco in the Ligue 1 title race, the figures behind the Uruguayan should give one a fair idea about what his stance in the Ballon d’Or race would have been had things turned out otherwise.
In addition, his Parisian team suffering a shocking upset against Barcelona in the Round of 16 the UEFA Champions League, pretty much ruined the party for the former Napoli man. Nonetheless, his personal feat cannot be overemphasized and he surely deserves to be named as a potential Ballon d’Or 2017 contestant.
4. Neymar Jr
With all rivalry and bias aside, this guy is simply a joy to watch. We believe that despite Messi scoring most of the goals last season, Neymar was arguably Barcelona’s stand out player. In moments they needed a miracle to happen, one would see the Brazilian audaciously run down defenders’ throats and beat them mercilessly, creating chances out of nothing.
Although the Blaugrana were overshadowed by Real Madrid and only managed to secure the Copa del Rey, Neymar’s 25 goals in 40 games isn’t exactly a bad tally. Close but no cigar, nonetheless.
3. Lionel Messi
The duopoly between himself and his arch-rival Cristiano Ronaldo was rehashed just like every other season in almost a decade but, once again, the Portuguese superstar seems to have had the last laugh. The Argentine blew an 11-2 lead on the UEFA Champions League’s top scorers leaderboard after his side stumbled to the stroppiness of Juventus.
Despite scoring a crucial last-gasp winner in El Clasico at the latter stage of last season, the 30-year-old forward’s input became quite extraneous after Real Madrid failed to lose a game thereof.
2. Gianluigi Buffon
At a point, he was the favorite but the end of the season saw a different script being transcribed altogether. An imminent retirement was on the cards for the Bianconeri shot-stopper but it was only on the condition that he wins the UEFA Champions League at long last in his career.
Of course, he came close, having dealt with the blushes of Barcelona and Monaco before facing off with Cristiano Ronaldo and his Real Madrid gang. That encounter, obviously, almost erased a season-long performance which had set him on the path for the Ballon d’Or trophy. Needless to say, he still played a key role in Juventus’ successes on the domestic front.
1. Cristiano Ronaldo
With this guy, the least said, the better. There’s absolutely no need to recapitulate his incredible performance in the calendar year. He did what Messi couldn’t do — score past Buffon. He stands the tallest among our Top 3 picks. Click here for an intrinsic documentation of Cristiano’s journey towards his career-fifth Ballon d’Or.
Who is the Ballon d’Or 2017 winner?
UPDATED ON DEC 8, 2017: Cristiano Ronaldo successfully retained his crown as he became the 2017 Ballon d’Or winner on December 7.
1 – Ronaldo
2 – Messi
3 – Neymar
4 – Gianluigi Buffon
5 – Luka Modric
6 – Sergio Ramos
7 – Kylian Mbappe
8 – N'golo Kante
9 – Lewandowski
10 – Harry Kane pic.twitter.com/KHGhcYypyD
— CRonaldoDaily.com (@BreatheRonaldo) December 7, 2017
Check out how Ronaldo performed in the first half of 2017 by clicking here.
What are the Ballon d’Or 2017 voting results?
Once again, it was a landslide win for Cristiano Ronaldo. For the full Top 10 votes, view our power-packed report on the 2017 Ballon d’Or voting results, reactions, and what Ronaldo said.
CLEAR VICTORY FOR THE KING!
— CRonaldoDaily.com (@BreatheRonaldo) December 7, 2017
Check out how Cristiano Ronaldo totally crushed it in last year’s edition.
— CRonaldoDaily.com (@BreatheRonaldo) July 23, 2017
We reckon a similar feat could be on the cards.
UPDATE AS OF OCTOBER 9: The 30-man shortlist
The organizers of the Ballon d’Or award, France Football magazine, have revealed the names of 29 other football players who are supposed to rival Cristiano Ronaldo for the prestigious award.
Just as anticipated, the list features all the nine players who were cited by Team CRD to challenge the Real Madrid and Portuguese maestro back in July. Here is the full 30-man shortlist released by France Football magazine:
1. Neymar (Paris Saint-Germain)
2. Luka Modric (Real Madrid)
3. Paulo Dybala (Juventus)
4. Marcelo (Real Madrid)
5. N’golo Kanté (Chelsea)
6.Luis Suárez (FC Barcelona)
7. Sergio Ramos (Real Madrid)
8. Jan Oblak (Atlético Madrid)
9. Philippe Coutinho (Liverpool FC)
10. Dries Mertens (Napoli)
11. Kevin De Bruyne (Manchester City)
12. Robert Lewandowski (Bayern Munich)
13. David De Gea (Manchester United)
14. Harry Kane (Tottenham Hotspur)
15. Edin Dzeko (AS Roma)
16. Antoine Griezmann (Atlético Madrid)
17. Toni Kroos (Real Madrid)
18. Gianluigi Buffon (Juventus)
19. Sadio Mané (Liverpool FC)
20. Radamel Falcao (AS Monaco)
21. Lionel Messi (FC Barcelona)
22. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (Borussia Dortmund)
23. Edinson Cavani (Paris Saint-Germain)
24. Mats Hummels (Bayern Munich)
25. Karim Benzema (Real Madrid)
26. Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid)
27. Eden Hazard (Chelsea)
28. Leonardo Bonucci (AC Milan)
29. Isco Alarcon (Real Madrid)
30. Kylian Mbappé (Paris Saint-Germain)