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Updated November 2020
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L’Equipe, the organiser of the Ballon d’Or, has decided not to award a 2020 edition of the prestigious trophy due to the outbreak of COVID-19 that disrupted competitions across the world. Pascal Ferré, editor-in-chief of France Football, said:
“There will be no edition in 2020, because it turns out, after thoughtful consideration, that all the conditions are not met. We believe that such a singular year cannot —and should not— be treated as an ordinary one.”
“From a sports perspective, two months (January and February), out of the eleven generally required to form an opinion and decide who should lift the trophies, represent far too little to gauge and judge; without forgetting that the other games were played —or will be played— in unordinary conditions (behind closed doors, with five replacements, Champions League’s Final 8 played in a single game).”
Per Ferré, the awarding of the Ballon d’Or is set to resume in 2021.
Instead of the four usual winners (men and women Ballon d’Or, Kopa and Yachine Trophies), France Football will designate 11 players at the end of the year and establish an all-time team chosen by the usual Ballon d’Or jury.
Everything you need to know about the Ballon d’Or
Let’s take a look at what the Ballon d’Or is, how it’s decided and who has won it in the past.
Ballon d’Or history
The Ballon d’Or is an annual award presented by France Football to the best performing footballer over the past calendar year. The award is generally considered the highest individual honour a football player can receive. The first Ballon d’Or was awarded in 1956 to Stanley Matthews.
From 2010 to 2015 the Ballon d’Or was merged with the FIFA World Player of the Year Award, though it is now once again independently awarded by France Football. Since 2018 an award has also been presented to the best female player, the Ballon d’Or Feminin.
Ballon d’Or voting
The Ballon d’Or winner is chosen from 30 nominees by a panel of journalists. The 30-man shortlist is chosen by the editorial staff of France Football, and then an international jury of journalists from a number of different nations vote for the winner. Each country has one representative journalist. A full ranking of all nominees is given during the ceremony before the winner is announced.
Each journalist selects their top five players, with six points going to the first selection, four to the second, three to the third, two to the fourth and one to the player listed in fifth. The voting is based on a set criteria, which are considered in the following order:
Individual and collective performances from the past year
Player class, which France Football defines as “talent and fair play”
The player’s overall career
Ballon d’Or winners
For the majority of its history the Ballon d’Or produced a wide variety of winners, with a new player taking the prize most years. However, from 2008-2017 the award was shared exclusive between Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi, both winning a record five each.
Real Madrid’s Luke Modric broke that stronghold by winning the 2018 award, and though both Ronaldo and Messi are still in contention, the award is now much more open than it has been for most of the past decade.
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Most recent Ballon d’Or winners have won by a wide margin, with the last three winners gaining at least 200 more votes than second place. However, that doesn’t mean picking a winner is easy, so it’s important to do your research before betting on the Ballon d’Or.
It’s important to remember that award doesn’t simply go to whoever scores the most goals. Individual performances in certain tournaments and trophies won by a player are also big factors.
For example, while Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo recorded much more impressive numbers, Luka Modric’s 2018 win was largely put down to his performances during the 2018 World Cup. Modric led an unfancied Croatia to an unprecedented final, while Messi and Ronaldo both struggled to make an impact on the world’s biggest football competition.
This means its important to carefully consider each candidates achievements from the past year and pay close attention to the Ballon d’Or odds.
Bet on the Ballon d’Or today
Ready to bet on your pick for the 2019 Ballon d’Or? Compare the best betting sites offering Ballon d’Or odds with the help of our carefully selected list. All you need to do is compare, sign up and place your Ballon d’Or bet!
Yes. Some of the best sports betting sites have welcome bonuses and promotions such as free bets that you can use to bet on the Ballon d’Or. However, keep in mind that you’ll have to meet the minimum odds requirement, and your winnings may also be subject to wagering requirements. Always read the terms and conditions before claiming a betting bonus.
Sure. All the UK betting sites on our list have mobile optimised websites, so you can sign up and do your Ballon d’Or betting on your smartphone. Some of the best bookies also have mobile apps which make mobile betting faster, more convenient and have push notifications to alert you to the latest promotions.
This depends on where you live. The 2018 ceremony was broadcast on US, Canadian and French TV, but not on UK TV. There was no official YouTube stream either. Streams and channels hosting the event will be announced before the ceremony takes place.
No. If two or more players receive an equal amount of votes, the award goes to the player which was selected in the first place the most times. If this is not decisive, it goes to the number of second and then third places. If this still desn’t decide things, a new round of voting takes place between the tied players.
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Alan is a deputy editor at Compare.bet. He has an MA in English Literature and has three years of writing experience, with bylines at These Football Times and 90Min as well as extensive coverage of all things sports betting and online casino.
Daniel is the editor-in-chief at Compare.bet. He has half a decade of experience writing on topics including sports betting, online casino and the NBA. Daniel also covers Premier League football for The Warm-Up and has interviewed Louis Saha, Richard Dunne and Gary Pallister. In his spare time, Daniel enjoys film photography and making Spotify playlists.