With top 30 nominations done and dusted, which five players are the top contenders to win 2018 Ballon d’Or?
It’s that time of the year again – not Christmas, something much better than that. It is time to kick-start the debate about who deserves to win the Ballon d’Or. For the last 10 years, it used to be a fight between Barcelona and Real Madrid fans while others would just watch on the sidelines.
Not this year though. This time, Ronaldo and Messi might not even win the award for the record 6th time and their duopoly finally might be broken. With a number of players performing at the biggest stage in football – the World Cup, there are a number of contenders for this year’s Ballon d’Or.
Let us take a look at 5 such players:
If Ronaldo or Messi had won the World Cup and the Champions League in the same year, France Football would have home delivered the Ballon d’Or to their place. But unfortunately the football has drastically changed in the last few years and despite winning both the trophies, Raphael Varane, a defender, is nowhere near favorite to win the award.
But the Frenchman could still surprise a few people and pick up the glorious trophy in December. And he totally deserves to. Varane was crucial for both Real Madrid and France in their respective triumphs. Sturdy at the back, the Frenchman has hardly put a foot wrong throughout the year. He played every minute of France’s World Cup victory and also scored a crucial goal against Uruguay in the quarter-final. What else must a player do to win the award?
5. Kylian Mbappe:
Mbappe is favorite to win the award for the Best Young Player of the Year for the second time in a row and at the same time, the teenage sensation is in the race for the Ballon d’Or. That is simply unbelievable! And at the age of 19! – I wasn’t even scoring 4 goals in FIFA when I was 19.
The youngster scored 4 goals in the World Cup and almost each one of them came at a crucial time. Mbappe also won the award for the Best Young Player in Russia. And the Frenchman has not stopped there. After scoring 13 goals and providing 8 assists in his first season for PSG, Mbappe has taken it to the next level and has already scored 8 goals in 5 Ligue 1 appearances this season.
He might be young but Mbappe is not waiting for Messi and Ronaldo to retire in order to take the keys to their kingdom. He is ready to snatch them away!