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LIONEL MESSI BEATS ROBERT LEWANDOWSKI.
The Ballon d’Or ceremony saw Lionel Messi win the prestigious prize for a record seventh time with. The best players in the world were crowned at the Theatre du Chatelet in Paris.
Robert Lewandowski finished second in the voting. With Jorginho third while Barcelona Femini star Alexia Putellas won the Women’s Ballon d’Or. Here’s how the action unfolded on the night.
Lionel Messi has gracefully accepted his record-breaking seventh Ballon d’Or trophy during a glitzy ceremony in France.
Messi wins Ballon d’Or 2023
The Argentinian footballer was incredibly happy to receive the honour. However, he used his acceptance speech to say how the runner up was robbed last year.
Messi was the favourite going into the night for the 2023 award. However, Robert Lewandowski was largely tipped to take away the gong last year. After having an absolute blinder of a season.
The Ballon d’Or ended up going to no one in 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic affecting the whole sport.
Messi thought it was fitting to mention Lewandowski in his speech so that he could have his time in the spotlight.
“I’d like to mention Robert, it’s been a real honour to compete with him,” Messi said on stage. “I think France Football should award you your 2020 Ballon d’Or, you deserved it.”
Thankfully, the Polish international didn’t walk away from this year’s event empty-handed and was given France Football’s inaugural Striker of the Year.
He also took to Twitter to congratulate everyone on their success in the 2020/21 season.
“Congratulations Leo Messi and @alexiaputellas winners of the #BallonDor2021, congratulations also to all nominated players!” he said.
“I won Striker of the Year Award and no Player can win an individual award without the strongest team and loyal fans behind him. Thank you for your support.”
Lewandowski came in second on the rankings after Messi beat him by 33 points in the voting for the Golden Ball.
He was followed by Jorginho in third, Karim Benzema, N’Golo Kante, Cristiano Ronaldo, Mohamed Salah, Kevin De Bruyne, Kylian Mbappe and Gianluigi Donnarumma.
MESSI GIVES LEWANDOWSKI A MENTION
“I don’t know how many years I have left, but I hope there will still be many because I am having enormous fun,” Messi said at the France Football ceremony where he picked up his seventh Ballon d’Or before praising Lewandowski, who was the favourite to win the 2020 Ballon d’Or until it was cancelled due to the Covid-19 pandemic.”You deserve your Ballon d’Or,” the Argentine added. “Last year, everyone was in agreement to say that you were the big winner.”
Messi has made history this evening by winning a SEVENTH Ballon d’Or! What a player he is! Is he the greatest of all time? His record in this award certainly suggests so! The 34-year-old won this award for the first time back in 2009. Luis Suarez is now on stage to hand Messi the trophy.
MESSI WINS THE 2023 BALLON D’OR!
Lionel Messi has won a historic seventh Ballon d’Or after picking up the prestigious individual award at a ceremony in Paris. The 34-year-old has now won the Ballon d’Or in 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2015, 2019 and 2023, meaning he has lifted the prize handed to the best player in world football more times than any other male player in its history, two clear of Cristiano Ronaldo.
Messi beat out Robert Lewandowski who finished in second place and Chelsea midfielder Jorghino who was ranked third in the voting.