The Ballon d’Or will be awarded on Monday. Between the scorers, the winners of the various competitions of the year… here are the favorites.
While before the summer, everyone agreed to give the names of N’Golo Kanté or Kylian Mbappé for the individual title, everything changed after the summer break. The Euro, the Copa America and the League of Nations have indeed been there.
He may not have won La Liga, Euro and Champions League this year, but Karim Benzema has won a lot more than that. He returned by the front door in the France team and knew how to turn all the criticisms about him. Called by Didier Deschamps in May, he scored 9 goals (including 4 at the Euro despite the elimination of the Blues in the round of 16) since his return to the Blues. In the fall, he offered the League of Nations, his first title with the selection. While adding two sumptuous goals against Belgium and Spain. Finally, how can we not recall his status and his statistics with Real Madrid.
Sixfold Golden Ball, “La Pulga” won the Copa America and thus unlocked his title counter with Argentina. An immense joy for the one who remained on three defeats in the finals (1 World Cup, 2 Copa America). Elected best player in the competition, top scorer and assists, the one who is now without a club since the end of his contract with Barça had ended the 2020-2021 season with 38 goals and 14 assists. If at PSG, he does not shine yet, his first part of the season at Barça and with Albilceleste should therefore play in his favor.
Serial scorer Robert Lewandowski could well win the votes of the 180 jurors. In 2020, the Polish striker would have had all his chances, where he won the Champions League with Bayern Munich. This season, however, he broke Gerd Müller’s incredible record by one unit, scoring 41 goals in the 2020-2021 Bundesliga. What allow it to be titled?
Maybe not the most famous Italian on the planet, but not the least talented. N’Golo Kanté’s Chelsea teammate shone during the Euro. A player in the shadows, he is that precious midfielder that every team must have. Winner of the Champions League with the Blues and therefore of the Euro with Italy, he will have to show himself at the level in the coming months to apply for the Ballon d’Or. We know that shadow circles find it difficult to be recognized by the general public.
Will an Italian succeed Fabio Cannavaro, last winner of the Golden Ball? If Jorginho is the one who won the two most titles of the season, another will have his say with Gianluigi Donnarumma. The goalkeeper of Squadra Azzura, who will join PSG, achieved a sublime Euro until he was decisive in the final during the penalty shoot-out against England. If he has never played a Champions League match before, the one who finished 2e of Serie A with AC Milan behind rival Inter could be a title contender.
How not to quote it? Cristiano Ronaldo, five-time Ballon d’Or won only the Italian Cup and the Italian Supercup but he finished top scorer in Euro 2021 (5 goals). And above all, if Portugal lost its title of European champion, “CR7” broke the record for selection goals (112) held by Ali Daei. Back at Manchester United, he is aiming for new titles. What to claim the title?
They could have been quoted
N’Golo Kanté, Kylian Mbappé…