Ballon d’Or 2021: Bet on Player of the Year
While although the end of 2021 is soon upon us, there is still plenty of business to take care of before we reach 2022 and although the biggest team prizes in European club football will not be handed out until May of next year, this November is important on an individual level.
With the COVID-19 pandemic halting proceedings in 2020, it meant that none of the game’s elite could be deemed the winner of the Ballon d’Or and although that would have meant disappointment to a select few, they will be given the opportunity to win the award in 2021.
As the beautiful game returns to a far greater semblance of normality, it means there has thankfully been no need to halt or cease activities across Europe and because of this, the Ballon d’Or 2021 ceremony will be held at the end of this month.
Which means one of the best players in the world today will soon be rewarded for their efforts and in this article, we will provide all the necessary insight for you to be rewarded after placing your Ballon d’Or bets.
Favourite Players to Win the Ballon d’Or Trophy 2021
With the reveal of the Ballon d’or 2021 winner now just weeks away, the hot topic is just who will scoop this year’s award and although Lionel Messi may have changed allegiance in the summer, it is his efforts for previous club and country which are under the microscope.
Because although the diminutive Argentine may have fallen short in his pursuit of domestic or European crowns with Barcelona last season, it was his performances in the 2021 Copa America which have generated the most attention.
Attention that comes in the shape of his titanic duel with Cristiano Ronaldo over the years and although they have been neck and neck in terms of both club and individual accolades, it is the international stage where the Portuguese icon previously had the advantage.
An advantage that came with Cristiano Ronaldo being a part of Portugal’s victorious 2016 European Championship squad and to go alongside that conquering of the continent, he would also win the lesser Nations League three years later.
Even if you discount the Nations League as something of a non-comparable competition, it still meant that Messi had failed to lead Argentina to the top of South America’s footballing ladder. That was until the summer that has just passed.
Then again, the 34-year-old will not be the only superstar in the running and another name in contention is someone who will surely feel aggrieved at not being able to win the 2020 edition of the award.
That man is none other than Robert Lewandowski and after helping Bayern Munich lift the Champions League in 2019/20, this should have meant he was added to the long and illustrious list of Ballon d’Or winners.
However, a global pandemic will always have a habit of upsetting plans and for the Polish hitman, it also meant that his 34 goals in just 31 Bundesliga outings during the 2019/20 campaign, was a tally that went all but unnoticed.
Then again, Lewandowski has not necessarily rested on his laurels and with an even better Bundesliga goal record last season, he has rightfully placed himself on this year’s Ballon d’Or shortlist.
Because if his 2019/20 haul was impressive, then his 2020/21 was ludicrous by his own standards. Standards that saw the former Borussia Dortmund ace net 41 goals in 29 league appearances, as Bayern romped to a ninth successive Bundesliga crown.
Whether he has done enough to scoop the Ballon d’Or trophy remains to be seen and although he will be flying the flag for the Bundesliga, one wonders when the next winner from La Liga will materialise.
Where to Bet on Ballon d’Or 2021
Of course, this is not just an award that offers an interesting topic for discussion, it is also one that offers the ability for Ballon d’Or 2021 betting and if you want to test your acumen at the end of the month, there are plenty of opportunities available.
As always, it pays to look at the more trusted bookies with odds on this year’s Ballon d’Or and with the 30-man shortlist being announced last month, all you need to do is decide who will be the 2021 winner.
Will it be the man who left Barcelona behind after doing wonders for Argentina, will it be the man who struck fear into German defences last season, or will it be an outside bet? We will know the answers to all these questions on Monday November 29th.
Previous Ballon d’Or Winners
With Cristiano Ronaldo long since departing Real Madrid and Lionel Messi now calling time on his lengthy stint at Barcelona, there is something of a power vacuum within the confines of Spanish football.
While it is a power vacuum that does not look like being filled any time soon and with no heir apparent to the crown coming from Spain, one wonders if the Premier League will soon supply a Ballon d’Or winner.
Not since Michael Owen’s efforts for Liverpool were handsomely rewarded, has the Premier League put forward a viable candidate for Ballon d’Or success and although the competition can point to some the biggest clubs within Europe, their players have not quite been at the absolute best.
Then again, one could argue that whoever the Premier League put forward in the past 10 years or so, was never going to be able to break the duopoly that both Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi had on the award during that time.
Had England won the European Championships earlier this summer, then who is to say that Harry Kane may not have been a genuine contender for the Ballon d’Or 2021. Of course, with their final loss to Italy, it seems as if English names will once again be in the wilderness.
The History of the Ballon d’Or Trophy
While although the Ballon d’Or has been named as such for nearly its whole existence, it was rebranded as the FIFA Ballon d’Or between 2010 and 2015 and after being merged with the FIFA World Player of the Year, this would be the most coveted award in football.
However, this partnership would come to an end in 2015 and from 2016 onwards, the Ballon d’Or has no longer been under the auspices of FIFA. Which also means, the previous naming convention has been re-established.
While in terms of the actual award itself, the Ballon d’Or was an idea conceived by the football publication “France Football” and in the mid 1950’s, their brainchild was to crown the best player in Europe each year.
An award that was first handed over to Stanley Matthews in 1956, as the then Blackpool wing wizard saw off the dual challenge from the legendary Real Madrid pair of Alfredo Di Stefano and Raymond Kopa.
As for those who are talented enough to receive such an honour, they will be placing their hands on a golden ball that has been crafted by famous jewellers Mellerio dits Meller and with more than 400 years’ experience behind them, the creation of the Ballon d’Or was always going to be in safe hands.
Measuring 31 centimetres wide and 23 in both the two dimensions of the base, an award weighing five kilograms in solid gold will soon be handed over to the player deemed to be the most talented in 2021.
Ballon d’Or Fun Facts
Before the 2021 edition of the Ballon d’Or award is presented, Lionel Messi is the man who has received the prize the most and with six previous gold balls on his mantlepiece, he will now be aiming for a seventh this November.
His old foe Cristiano Ronaldo sits second in the list with five prizes to his name and the pair are two of only five players who have won the Ballon d’Or prize on three or more occasions. With the other trio being, Michel Platini, Johan Cruyff and Marco Van Basten.
What is interesting here, is the fact that no player has won the award on four separate occasions and after Ronaldo’s haul of five, the trio of Platini, Cruyff and Van Basten must make do with only three Ballon d’Or each.
In terms of the nation which has put forward the most Ballon d’Or winners, it is a three-way tie between Germany, the Netherlands and Portugal and these three countries have seen the award lifted seven times on their behalf.
Of those German seven, it has taken a quintet of men to make up that number, while when it comes to the Netherlands and Portugal, it has only required three players each, in order to do the Ballon d’Or heavy lifting.
Of course, it is not just particular nations that should be proud of their footballing kin, the same can be said for some of the biggest clubs within Europe and they do not get much bigger than both Barcelona and Real Madrid.
Between the two Spanish giants, they have seen a total of 23 Ballon d’Or raised and although the Lionel Messi/Cristiano Ronaldo duopoly will have played a huge part in that, these are not the only two who have been considered to be the very best on an annual basis.