Lionel Messi Ballon winner’s records and will they ever be broken?
On Monday, the 36-year-old forward won his eighth Ballon d’Or – three more than any other player.
After leading Argentina to World Cup glory in Qatar in December, Messi joined Major League Soccer franchise Inter Miami in America in July, ending his 20-year career in European football with Barcelona.
Messi has achieved many milestones and records throughout his career, both for club and country. In the 2022-23 season, Messi won the Ballon d’Or, the award for the best footballer in the world.
In spite of the best efforts of prolific Manchester City striker Erling Haaland, his inspirational role in helping Argentina win the World Cup for the first time since 1986 almost ensured he would extend his record of award wins to eight.
Despite Ronaldo’s five nominations, Messi is the closest rival with five. However, aged 38 and not even included in the 30-man shortlist, it is hard to see Ronaldo challenging Messi.
Besides Messi and Ronaldo, the only other two Ballon d’Or winners still playing are Luka Modric of Croatia and Karim Benzema of France. Since both are well into their 30s, they have little chance of breaking the record. In the future, Haaland, Real Madrid and England midfielder Jude Bellingham, Real and Brazil forward Vinicius Jr, and even Bayern Munich and England striker Harry Kane could be in the mix, but it will take them a long time to catch Messi.