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10 players who would have won the Ballon d’Or if not for Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi

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We look at the players who would have won the Golden Ball had it not been for Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi.

We are blessed to live in the same era as us Cristiano Ronaldo i Lionel Messi. They are the two best footballers of all time and have repeatedly pitted themselves against each other with their rivalries reaching unforeseen heights as they set the ranks for Real Madrid and Barcelona – two of the fiercest rival clubs in football.

Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi have been at the second level for so long compared to their contemporaries. They enjoyed the duopoly over the Golden Ball which is the most prestigious individual award in football. The two of them have won 11 of the last 12 trophies in the Golden Golden Ball.

Because of their dominance, several world-class players missed the opportunity to win the Golden Ball, and today we look at eight players who would have won the most desirable individual honor of football had it not been for Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo.


2008: Fernando Torres

Germany v Spain - UEFA EURO 2008 Final
Germany v Spain – UEFA EURO 2008 Final

The climax Fernando Torres he was an indomitable beast that knew how to give nightmares to even the toughest defenders on the planet. Although his peak did not last very long, Fernando Torres in 2008 was simply unsustainable for both the club and the state.

He played his main hand in the Spanish triumph at Euro 2008 and scored the winning goal. That season, he also scored 33 goals in 46 appearances for Liverpool.

2009: Xavi Hernandez

Xavi celebrates with teammates after providing four assists in El Clasico
Xavi celebrates with teammates after providing four assists in El Clasico

Both Barcelona and Spain used to be unstoppable in this period, and it was mostly until the midfield trophy of Xavi, Andres Iniesta and Sergio Busquets. Xavi was in shape for his life in 2009. He won the Champions League in 2009 and assisted Messi’s goal in the final.

Xavi recorded an incredible 31 assists for Barcelona in all competitions in the 2008-09 season, playing from the central midfield. He also scored 10 goals.

2010: Andres Iniesta

Netherlands v Spain: FIFA World Cup Final 2010
The Netherlands vs. Spain: FIFA World Cup Final 2010

To this day, people are divided around Lionel Messi who eventually won the 2010 Golden Ball. The common consensus is that Don Andres should have taken him home after he won the 2010 World Cup final and was generally the best footballer in the world.

His bottom was so controversial that France Football apologized to him.

2011: Xavi Hernandez

FC Barcelona training and press conference
FC Barcelona training and press conference

Xavi he continued his sublime form because Barcelona and Spain dominated club and international circles, respectively. Xavi was an integral part of arguably the best football team that came out on the field in the 21st century in 2011 and entered the UEFA Champions League.

Posted March 15, 2021, 5:58 PM IST


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