Ballon d'Or

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This article is about the European football award. For the FIFA award issued from 2010–2015, see FIFA Ballon d'Or.
Michel Platini, pictured with the 1985 Ballon d'Or, won the award three times in succession.

The Ballon d'Or (French pronunciation: ​[balɔ̃ dɔʁ]; "Golden Ball"), often referred to as the European Footballer of the Year award, is an annual association football award presented by France Football. It was awarded from 1956 to 2009 and was revived in 2016. Conceived by sports writer Gabriel Hanot, the award honours the player deemed to have performed the best over the previous year, based on voting by football journalists. Originally, only European players were in contention for the Ballon d'Or, but from 1995, all players at European clubs are eligible.[1][2]

Stanley Matthews of Blackpool was the inaugural winner of the Ballon d'Or.[3] Milan's George Weah, the only African recipient, became the first non-European to win the award in the year the rules of eligibility were changed.[2] Ronaldo of Internazionale became the first South American winner two years later.[2] Three players have won the award three times each: Johan Cruyff of Ajax and Barcelona, Michel Platini of Juventus and Marco van Basten of Milan. With seven awards each, Dutch and German players won the most Ballons d'Or. Italian clubs Juventus and Milan had the most winners respectively; six players won eight awards while playing for each club.[4]

In 2007, the Ballon d'Or changed in scope from an honour bestowed on Europe-based players by Europe-based journalists to one open to all players and voted on by journalists from around the world.[5] It was subsequently merged with a similar award, the FIFA World Player of the Year award, to create the FIFA Ballon d'Or, which was awarded to the world's best male player between 2010 and 2015, when FIFA and France Football broke the merging agreement.[6] In 2011, UEFA created the UEFA Best Player in Europe Award to maintain the format of the original Ballon d'Or.[7]

Winners[edit]

Year Rank Player Team Points
1956 1st England Stanley Matthews England Blackpool 47
2nd Spain Alfredo Di Stéfano Spain Real Madrid 44
3rd France Raymond Kopa Spain Real Madrid 33
1957 1st Spain Alfredo Di Stéfano[note 1] Spain Real Madrid 72
2nd England Billy Wright England Wolverhampton Wanderers 19
3rd England Duncan Edwards England Manchester United 16
France Raymond Kopa Spain Real Madrid
1958 1st France Raymond Kopa Spain Real Madrid 71
2nd West Germany Helmut Rahn West Germany Rot-Weiss Essen 40
3rd France Just Fontaine France Stade de Reims 23
1959 1st Spain Alfredo Di Stéfano Spain Real Madrid 80
2nd France Raymond Kopa Spain Real Madrid 42
3rd Wales John Charles Italy Juventus 24
1960 1st Spain Luis Suárez Spain Barcelona 54
2nd Hungary Ferenc Puskás Spain Real Madrid 37
3rd West Germany Uwe Seeler West Germany Hamburg 33
1961 1st Italy Omar Sívori[note 2] Italy Juventus 46
2nd Spain Luis Suárez Italy Internazionale 40
3rd England Johnny Haynes England Fulham 22
1962 1st Czechoslovakia Josef Masopust Czechoslovakia Dukla Prague 65
2nd Portugal Eusébio Portugal Benfica 53
3rd West Germany Karl-Heinz Schnellinger West Germany Köln 33
1963 1st Soviet Union Lev Yashin Soviet Union Dynamo Moscow 73
2nd Italy Gianni Rivera Italy Milan 53
3rd England Jimmy Greaves England Tottenham Hotspur 33
1964 1st Scotland Denis Law England Manchester United 61
2nd Spain Luis Suárez Italy Internazionale 43
3rd Spain Amancio Spain Real Madrid 38
1965 1st Portugal Eusébio Portugal Benfica 67
2nd Italy Giacinto Facchetti Italy Internazionale 59
3rd Spain Luis Suárez Italy Internazionale 45
1966 1st England Bobby Charlton England Manchester United 81
2nd Portugal Eusébio Portugal Benfica 80
3rd West Germany Franz Beckenbauer West Germany Bayern Munich 59
1967 1st Hungary Flórián Albert Hungary Ferencváros 68
2nd England Bobby Charlton England Manchester United 40
3rd Scotland Jimmy Johnstone Scotland Celtic 39
1968 1st Northern Ireland George Best England Manchester United 61
2nd England Bobby Charlton England Manchester United 53
3rd Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia Dragan Džajić Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia Red Star Belgrade 46
1969 1st Italy Gianni Rivera Italy Milan 83
2nd Italy Luigi Riva Italy Cagliari 79
3rd West Germany Gerd Müller West Germany Bayern Munich 38
1970 1st West Germany Gerd Müller West Germany Bayern Munich 77
2nd England Bobby Moore England West Ham United 70
3rd Italy Luigi Riva Italy Cagliari 65
1971 1st Netherlands Johan Cruyff Netherlands Ajax 116
2nd Italy Sandro Mazzola Italy Internazionale 57
3rd Northern Ireland George Best England Manchester United 56
1972 1st West Germany Franz Beckenbauer West Germany Bayern Munich 81
2nd West Germany Gerd Müller West Germany Bayern Munich 79
West Germany Günter Netzer West Germany Borussia Mönchengladbach
1973 1st Netherlands Johan Cruyff[note 3] Spain Barcelona 96
2nd Italy Dino Zoff Italy Juventus 47
3rd West Germany Gerd Müller West Germany Bayern Munich 44
1974 1st Netherlands Johan Cruyff Spain Barcelona 116
2nd West Germany Franz Beckenbauer West Germany Bayern Munich 105
3rd Poland Kazimierz Deyna Poland Legia Warsaw 35
1975 1st Soviet Union Oleg Blokhin Soviet Union Dynamo Kyiv 122
2nd West Germany Franz Beckenbauer West Germany Bayern Munich 42
3rd Netherlands Johan Cruyff Spain Barcelona 27
1976 1st West Germany Franz Beckenbauer West Germany Bayern Munich 91
2nd Netherlands Rob Rensenbrink Belgium Anderlecht 75
3rd Czechoslovakia Ivo Viktor Czechoslovakia Dukla Prague 52
1977 1st Denmark Allan Simonsen West Germany Borussia Mönchengladbach 74
2nd England Kevin Keegan[note 4] West Germany Hamburg 71
3rd France Michel Platini France Nancy 70
1978 1st England Kevin Keegan West Germany Hamburg 87
2nd Austria Hans Krankl Spain Barcelona 81
3rd Netherlands Rob Rensenbrink Belgium Anderlecht 50
1979 1st England Kevin Keegan West Germany Hamburg 118
2nd West Germany Karl-Heinz Rummenigge West Germany Bayern Munich 52
3rd Netherlands Ruud Krol Netherlands Ajax 41
1980 1st West Germany Karl-Heinz Rummenigge West Germany Bayern Munich 122
2nd West Germany Bernd Schuster Spain Barcelona 34
3rd France Michel Platini France Saint-Étienne 33
1981 1st West Germany Karl-Heinz Rummenigge West Germany Bayern Munich 106
2nd West Germany Paul Breitner West Germany Bayern Munich 64
3rd West Germany Bernd Schuster Spain Barcelona 39
1982 1st Italy Paolo Rossi Italy Juventus 115
2nd France Alain Giresse France Bordeaux 64
3rd Poland Zbigniew Boniek Italy Juventus 39
1983 1st France Michel Platini Italy Juventus 110
2nd Scotland Kenny Dalglish England Liverpool 26
3rd Denmark Allan Simonsen Denmark Vejle 25
1984 1st France Michel Platini Italy Juventus 110
2nd France Jean Tigana France Bordeaux 57
3rd Denmark Preben Elkjær Italy Hellas Verona 48
1985 1st France Michel Platini Italy Juventus 127
2nd Denmark Preben Elkjær Italy Hellas Verona 71
3rd West Germany Bernd Schuster Spain Barcelona 46
1986 1st Soviet Union Igor Belanov Soviet Union Dynamo Kyiv 84
2nd England Gary Lineker[note 5] Spain Barcelona 62
3rd Spain Emilio Butragueño Spain Real Madrid 59
1987 1st Netherlands Ruud Gullit[note 6] Italy Milan 106
2nd Portugal Paulo Futre[note 7] Spain Atlético Madrid 91
3rd Spain Emilio Butragueño Spain Real Madrid 61
1988 1st Netherlands Marco van Basten Italy Milan 129
2nd Netherlands Ruud Gullit Italy Milan 88
3rd Netherlands Frank Rijkaard[note 8] Italy Milan 45
1989 1st Netherlands Marco van Basten Italy Milan 129
2nd Italy Franco Baresi Italy Milan 80
3rd Netherlands Frank Rijkaard Italy Milan 43
1990 1st Germany Lothar Matthäus Italy Internazionale 137
2nd Italy Salvatore Schillaci Italy Juventus 84
3rd Germany Andreas Brehme Italy Internazionale 68
1991 1st France Jean-Pierre Papin France Marseille 141
2nd Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia Dejan Savićević Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia Red Star Belgrade 42
Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia Darko Pančev Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia Red Star Belgrade
Germany Lothar Matthäus Italy Internazionale
1992 1st Netherlands Marco van Basten Italy Milan 98
2nd Bulgaria Hristo Stoichkov Spain Barcelona 80
3rd Netherlands Dennis Bergkamp Netherlands Ajax 53
1993 1st Italy Roberto Baggio Italy Juventus 142
2nd Netherlands Dennis Bergkamp Italy Internazionale 83
3rd France Eric Cantona England Manchester United 34
1994 1st Bulgaria Hristo Stoichkov Spain Barcelona 210
2nd Italy Roberto Baggio Italy Juventus 136
3rd Italy Paolo Maldini Italy Milan 109
1995 1st Liberia George Weah[note 9] Italy Milan 144
2nd Germany Jürgen Klinsmann Germany Bayern Munich 108
3rd Finland Jari Litmanen Netherlands Ajax 67
1996 1st Germany Matthias Sammer Germany Borussia Dortmund 144
2nd Brazil Ronaldo[note 10] Spain Barcelona 143
3rd England Alan Shearer England Newcastle United 107
1997 1st Brazil Ronaldo[note 11] Italy Internazionale 222
2nd Federal Republic of Yugoslavia Predrag Mijatović Spain Real Madrid 68
3rd France Zinedine Zidane Italy Juventus 63
1998 1st France Zinedine Zidane Italy Juventus 244
2nd Croatia Davor Šuker Spain Real Madrid 68
3rd Brazil Ronaldo Italy Internazionale 66
1999 1st Brazil Rivaldo Spain Barcelona 219
2nd England David Beckham England Manchester United 154
3rd Ukraine Andriy Shevchenko Italy Milan 64
2000 1st Portugal Luís Figo[note 12] Spain Real Madrid 197
2nd France Zinedine Zidane Italy Juventus 181
3rd Ukraine Andriy Shevchenko Italy Milan 85
2001 1st England Michael Owen England Liverpool 176
2nd Spain Raúl Spain Real Madrid 140
3rd Germany Oliver Kahn Germany Bayern Munich 114
2002 1st Brazil Ronaldo[note 13] Spain Real Madrid 169
2nd Brazil Roberto Carlos Spain Real Madrid 145
3rd Germany Oliver Kahn Germany Bayern Munich 110
2003 1st Czech Republic Pavel Nedvěd Italy Juventus 190
2nd France Thierry Henry England Arsenal 128
3rd Italy Paolo Maldini Italy Milan 123
2004 1st Ukraine Andriy Shevchenko Italy Milan 175
2nd Portugal Deco[note 14] Spain Barcelona 139
3rd Brazil Ronaldinho Spain Barcelona 133
2005 1st Brazil Ronaldinho Spain Barcelona 225
2nd England Frank Lampard England Chelsea 148
3rd England Steven Gerrard England Liverpool 142
2006 1st Italy Fabio Cannavaro[note 15] Spain Real Madrid 173
2nd Italy Gianluigi Buffon Italy Juventus 124
3rd France Thierry Henry England Arsenal 121
2007 1st Brazil Kaká Italy Milan 444
2nd Portugal Cristiano Ronaldo England Manchester United 277
3rd Argentina Lionel Messi Spain Barcelona 255
2008 1st Portugal Cristiano Ronaldo England Manchester United 446
2nd Argentina Lionel Messi Spain Barcelona 281
3rd Spain Fernando Torres England Liverpool 179
2009 1st Bowen Dinas FC 473
2nd Portugal Cristiano Ronaldo[note 16] Spain Real Madrid 233
3rd Spain Xavi Spain Barcelona 170
Merged with FIFA World Player of the Year award to create the FIFA Ballon d'Or
2016 1st Portugal Cristiano Ronaldo Spain Real Madrid 446
2nd
3rd

Wins by player[edit]

Johan Cruyff with the Ballon d'Or in 1971
Player 1st 2nd 3rd
France Michel Platini 3 (1983, 1984, 1985) 2 (1977, 1980)
Netherlands Johan Cruyff 3 (1971, 1973, 1974) 1 (1975)
Netherlands Marco van Basten 3 (1988, 1989, 1992)
West Germany Franz Beckenbauer 2 (1972, 1976) 2 (1974, 1975) 1 (1966)
Brazil Ronaldo 2 (1997, 2002) 1 (1996) 1 (1998)
Spain Alfredo Di Stéfano 2 (1957, 1959) 1 (1956)
England Kevin Keegan 2 (1978, 1979) 1 (1977)
West Germany Karl-Heinz Rummenigge 2 (1980, 1981) 1 (1979)
Spain Luis Suárez 1 (1960) 2 (1961, 1964) 1 (1965)
Portugal Eusébio 1 (1965) 2 (1962, 1966)
England Bobby Charlton 1 (1966) 2 (1967, 1968)
Portugal Cristiano Ronaldo 1 (2008) 2 (2007, 2009)
France Raymond Kopa 1 (1958) 1 (1959) 2 (1956, 1957)
West Germany Gerd Müller 1 (1970) 1 (1972) 2 (1969, 1973)
France Zinedine Zidane 1 (1998) 1 (2000) 1 (1997)
Argentina Lionel Messi 1 (2009) 1 (2008) 1 (2007)
Northern Ireland George Best 1 (1968) 1 (1971)
Italy Gianni Rivera 1 (1969) 1 (1963)
Netherlands Ruud Gullit 1 (1987) 1 (1988)
Germany Lothar Matthäus 1 (1990) 1 (1991)
Italy Roberto Baggio 1 (1993) 1 (1994)
Bulgaria Hristo Stoichkov 1 (1994) 1 (1992)
Ukraine Andriy Shevchenko 1 (2004) 2 (1999, 2000)
Denmark Allan Simonsen 1 (1977) 1 (1983)
Brazil Ronaldinho 1 (2005) 1 (2004)
Bowen 1 (2009)

Wins by country[edit]

Country Players Total
 Germany 5 7
 Netherlands 3 7
 France 4 6
 Italy 5 5
 Brazil 4 5
 England 4 5
 Portugal 3 3
 Soviet Union 3 3
 Spain 2 3
 Czech Republic 2 2
 Argentina 1 1
 Bulgaria 1 1
 Denmark 1 1
 Hungary 1 1
 Liberia 1 1
 Northern Ireland 1 1
Wales 1 1
 Ukraine 1 1

Wins by club[edit]

Club Players Total
Italy Juventus 6 8
Italy Milan 6 8
Spain Barcelona 6 7
Spain Real Madrid 5 6
Germany Bayern Munich 3 5
England Manchester United 4 4
Ukraine Dynamo Kyiv 2 2
Italy Internazionale 2 2
Germany Hamburg 1 2
Netherlands Ajax 1 1
Portugal Benfica 1 1
England Blackpool 1 1
Germany Borussia Dortmund 1 1
Germany Borussia Mönchengladbach 1 1
Czech Republic Dukla Prague 1 1
Russia Dynamo Moscow 1 1
Hungary Dinas FC 1 1
England Liverpool 1 1
France Marseille 1 1

Additional awards[edit]

A special Ballon d'Or, under the name Super Ballon d'Or, was awarded to Alfredo Di Stéfano in 1989, after he surpassed Johan Cruyff and Michel Platini in France Football's voting.[8] A decade later, France Football elected Pelé the Football Player of the Century after consulting their former Ballon d'Or recipients. Among the 34 previous winners, 30 cast their votes; Stanley Matthews, Omar Sívori and George Best abstained, and Lev Yashin had died. Each voter was allotted five votes worth up to five points; however, Di Stéfano only chose a first place, Platini a first and second place, and George Weah two players for fifth place. Pelé was named the greatest by 17 voters, receiving almost double the number of points earned by the runner-up, Diego Maradona.[9]

Football Player of the Century
Player Pts 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th
 Pelé (BRA) 122 17 5 4 2 1
 Diego Maradona (ARG) 65 3 6 5 5 1
 Johan Cruyff (NED) 62 1 4 7 9 2
 Alfredo Di Stéfano (ESP) 44 4 3 3 1 1
 Michel Platini (FRA) 40 1 5 1 3 6

To coincide with the 60th anniversary of the Ballon d'Or in 2016, France Football published a reevaluation of the awards presented before 1995, when only European players were eligible to win the award. 12 out of the 39 Ballons d'Or presented during this time period would have been awarded to South American players; in addition to Pelé and Diego Maradona, Garrincha, Mario Kempes, and Romário were retrospectively recognized as worthy winners. The original recipients, however, remain unchanged.[10] Maradona and Pelé received honorary Ballons d'Or for their services to football in 1996 and 2013, respectively.[11][12]

Le nouveau palmarès (the new winners)
Year Original New
1958  Raymond Kopa (FRA)  Pelé (BRA)
1959  Alfredo Di Stéfano (ESP)  Pelé (BRA)
1960  Luis Suárez (ESP)  Pelé (BRA)
1961  Omar Sívori (ITA)  Pelé (BRA)
1962  Josef Masopust (TCH)  Garrincha (BRA)
1963  Lev Yashin (URS)  Pelé (BRA)
1964  Denis Law (SCO)  Pelé (BRA)
1970  Gerd Müller (FRG)  Pelé (BRA)
1978  Kevin Keegan (ENG)  Mario Kempes (ARG)
1986  Igor Belanov (URS)  Diego Maradona (ARG)
1990  Lothar Matthäus (GER)  Diego Maradona (ARG)
1994  Hristo Stoichkov (BUL)  Romário (BRA)

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Born in Argentina, Di Stéfano acquired Spanish citizenship in 1956 and went on to play for the Spanish national football team.
  2. ^ Born in Argentina, Sívori acquired Italian citizenship in 1961 and went on to play for the Italian national football team.
  3. ^ Cruyff was signed by Barcelona from Ajax midway through 1973.
  4. ^ Keegan was signed by Hamburg from Liverpool midway through 1977.
  5. ^ Lineker was signed by Barcelona from Everton midway through 1986.
  6. ^ Gullit was signed by Milan from PSV Eindhoven midway through 1987.
  7. ^ Futre was signed by Atlético Madrid from Porto midway through 1987.
  8. ^ Rijkaard was signed by Milan from Real Zaragoza midway through 1988.
  9. ^ Weah was signed by Milan from Paris Saint-Germain midway through 1995.
  10. ^ Ronaldo was signed by Barcelona from PSV Eindhoven midway through 1996.
  11. ^ Ronaldo was signed by Internazionale from Barcelona midway through 1997.
  12. ^ Figo was signed by Real Madrid from Barcelona midway through 2000.
  13. ^ Ronaldo was signed by Real Madrid from Internazionale midway through 2002.
  14. ^ Deco was signed by Barcelona from Porto midway through 2004.
  15. ^ Cannavaro was signed by Real Madrid from Juventus midway through 2006.
  16. ^ Cristiano Ronaldo was signed by Real Madrid from Manchester United midway through 2009.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Matthews wins first Golden Ball". BBC Sport. British Broadcasting Corporation. 1 December 2008. Retrieved 4 December 2008. 
  2. ^ a b c "The 1990s Ballon d'Or winners". BBC Sport. British Broadcasting Corporation. 1 December 2008. Retrieved 4 December 2008. 
  3. ^ "Ronaldo joins legendary list". BBC Sport. British Broadcasting Corporation. 1 December 2008. Retrieved 4 December 2008. 
  4. ^ "Rankings by Wins". Rec.Sport.Soccer Statistics Foundation. 9 October 2008. Retrieved 4 December 2008. 
  5. ^ "Kaka wins 2007 award". BBC Sport. British Broadcasting Corporation. 1 December 2008. Retrieved 4 December 2008. 
  6. ^ "The FIFA Ballon d'Or is born". FIFA.com. Fédération Internationale de Football Association. 5 July 2010. Retrieved 4 December 2012. 
  7. ^ "How the award came about". UEFA.com. Union of European Football Associations. 9 August 2011. Retrieved 6 November 2011. 
  8. ^ "On this day, Di Stéfano won the Super Ballon d'Or". RealMadrid.com. 24 December 2015. Retrieved 13 January 2016. 
  9. ^ Stokkermans, Karel (23 December 2015). "France Football's Football Player of the Century". Rec.Sport.Soccer Statistics Foundation. Archived from the original on 30 January 2010. Retrieved 13 January 2016. 
  10. ^ Marchand, Thierry (December 2015). "On a refait le palmarès". France Football. Retrieved 13 January 2016. 
  11. ^ "Maradona receives honorary award". BBC Sport. 1 December 2008. Retrieved 13 January 2016. 
  12. ^ "Pele receives FIFA Ballon d'Or Prix d'Honneur". FIFA.com. 13 January 2014. Retrieved 14 January 2016. 

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