The 2021 Ballon d’Or winner for both men and women category will be announced later this month, with Lionel Messi, Robert Lewandowski and Cristiano Ronaldo being the favourite to win the award in the men category while Barcelona’s Alexia Putellas and Chelsea’s Sam Kerr among the favourites in women category.
The awarding of the prize was cancelled in 2020 and the world’s best players are again making their cases to claim the coveted individual honour After being cancelled in 2020, the Ballon d’Or is back, with the great and good of the football world again eyeing the biggest individual honour the game has to offer. The shortlist for the 2021 prize has now been announced, with 29 players joining 2019 winner Lionel Messi on the shortlist to claim this year’s prize. The winner will be announced on Monday, November 29 in Paris, so who will go home with this prestigious award?
WHO HAS BEEN NOMINATED FOR THE MEN’S AWARD?
Lionel Messi is the current holder of the trophy after being crowned the winner in 2019, and after a magnificent year where he played 48 games, scored 40 goals and led Argentina to their first Copa America title since 1993, Messi won the player of the tournament as Argentina lifted the Copa America and he also led Barca to Copa del Rey success before leaving in the summer.
Lewandowski scored 41 goals in 29 Bundesliga games last season to break Gerd Muller’s 49-year record. He also finished as the top scorer in Europe and broke a club record for scoring in 19 consecutive matches for Bayern Munich. Lewandowski’s goals helped Bayern win five trophies, while he has also netted nine goals in 11 appearances for Poland this year.
Cristiano Ronaldo holds the world record for international goals, having taken his tally to 115 The 36-year-old Ronaldo, already Europe’s top-scoring international footballer surpassed the existing world-record mark set by former Iran forward Ali Daei – who remains the only other men’s player to have claimed a century of international goals – which he had shared since this summer’s UEFA EURO 2020 tournament.
Full list of men’s nominees: Cesar Azpilicueta (Chelsea), Nicolo Barella (Inter Milan), Karim Benzema (Real Madrid), Leonardo Bonucci (Juventus), Kevin De Bruyne (Manchester City), Giorgio Chiellini (Juventus), Cristiano Ronaldo (Manchester United), Ruben Dias (Manchester City), Gianluigi Donnarumma (Paris Saint-Germain), Bruno Fernandes (Manchester United), Phil Foden (Manchester City), Erling Haaland (Borussia Dortmund), Jorginho (Chelsea), Harry Kane (Tottenham), N’Golo Kante (Chelsea), Simon Kjaer (AC Milan), Robert Lewandowski (Bayern Munich), Romelu Lukaku (Chelsea), Riyad Mahrez (Manchester City), Lautaro Martinez (Inter Milan), Kylian Mbappe (Paris Saint-Germain), Lionel Messi (Paris Saint-Germain), Luka Modric (Real Madrid), Gerard Moreno (Villarreal), Mason Mount (Chelsea), Neymar (Paris Saint-Germain), Pedri (Barcelona), Mohamed Salah (Liverpool), Raheem Sterling (Manchester City), Luis Suarez (Atletico Madrid).
WHO IS THE NOMINATED FOR THE WOMEN’S AWARD?
Full list of women’s nominees: Kadidiatou Diani (PSG), Fran Kirby (Chelsea), Jennifer Hermoso (Barcelona), Christiane Endler (Lyon), Christine Sinclair (Thorns FC), Ashley Lawrence (PSG), Irene Paredes (PSG, Barcelona), Jessie Fleming (Chelsea), Lieke Martens (Barcelona), Sandra Panos (Barcelona), Vivianne Miedema (Arsenal), Ellen White (Manchester City), Pernille Harder (Chelsea), Sam Mewis (North Carolina Courage), Wendie Renard (Lyon), Marie-Antoinette Katoto (PSG), Stina Blackstenius (Hacken), Magdalena Eriksson (Chelsea), Sam Kerr (Chelsea), Alexia Putellas (Barcelona)