Lionel Messi beats Haaland and Mbappe to Ballon d'Or, opens a bigger lead on Ronaldo

Lionel Messi wins 2023 Ballon d'Or

Lionel Messi beats Haaland and Mbappe to Ballon d'Or, opens a bigger lead on Ronaldo

Faruq Ibrahim 22:47 - 30.10.2023

Argentina international Lionel Messi picked up a record eight Ballon d'Or, beating Manchester City's Erling Haaland and former teammate Kylian Mbappe to the prize.

Lionel Messi winning the Ballon d'Or has been an open secret for the past few weeks. He has now been officially announced as the winner of France Football's coveted prize.

The Inter Miami star first won the prize in 2009 after finishing on the podium for two consecutive editions. 15 years later, he is still competing at the summit of the sport and has now picked up his eighth Ballon d'Or gong.

Lionel Messi beats Mbappe and Haaland to the Prize

As Pulse Sports reported, the editor France Football the organisers of the Ballon d’Or announced that the award had three names in contention, Messi, Mbappe and Haaland.

Lionel Messi and Mbappe were PSG teammates over the period in review, and although they failed in the Champions League, the pair won a record 11th league title for Le Parisien, with the Argentine setting a record 16 league assists and the former Monaco man winning the Golden Boot with 29 goals.

However, it was their performance at the World Cup that earned them a place on the podium. Messi led the Albiceleste to triumph in the tournament, scoring a brace in the final—to total seven goals in the tournament—against France, who came close as they were powered by Mbappe, who bagged a hattrick in the final, the first player to do so since Geoff Hurst for England in 1966.

Messi wins eighth Ballon d'Or Award || Credit: X
Messi wins eighth Ballon d'Or Award || Credit: X
Lionel Messi posing with the Ballon d'Or
Lionel Messi posing with the Ballon d'Or

Haaland’s submission is his exceptional club season, winning the treble with Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City, a campaign fuelled by his goals. He scored a top-five-league-high 53 goals last season, 35 of which he scored in the Premier League.

His 35 goals were a Premier League record, as no player had reached that mark since the rebranding of the league in 1992. His 11 Champions League goals were also the highest in the Champions League, meaning he won the league and UCL golden boots.

In line with many reports prior to the award ceremony, the father of three piped his younger competitors to the award, taking his tally of France Football’s prize to eight. He won his first in 2009 and has now picked up what is expected to be his last, given his decision to move to the up-and-coming Major League Soccer.

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