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3 Players Who Can Stop Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo from winning the Ballon d'Or this year

Jidonu Mauyon
ANALYST
Top 5 / Top 10
18.82K   //    06 Jun 2018, 14:41 IST

TOPSHOT-FBL-FRA-LIGUE1-PARIS-TOULOUSE
Neymar Jr

It is now becoming a habit to start any talk regarding the Ballon d'Or by mentioning Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo at the forefront. Why not, when the two superstars shared the last 10 editions of the prestigious award between them (5 apiece)?

Read, Also: Ballon d'Or Power Rankings: June 2018

These two superstars have been unstoppable ever since they broke onto the stage in 2008, creating an unprecedented duopoly on top of the football world, exerting their dominance for 10 straight years.

They have also been the clear favorites to win the Ballon d'Or every season, including the current one. In fact, the award has become a two-horse race, with either of the two superstars expected to clinch it every year.

However, considering the recent developments in the sport and the possibilities ahead, it finally looks like another superstar can succeed in stopping these amazing players from winning the Ballon d'Or this year. With some players performing at extraordinary levels at the moment, coupled with the numerous opportunities ahead, the prestigious award could end up in the hands of another superstar.

Therefore, let us look at 3 players who can eventually dethrone Messi and Ronaldo and become the best player in the world:


#3. Antoine Griezmann

Marseille v Atletico Madrid - Europa League Final
Griezmann helped Atletico to claim the Europa League last term

Many people will definitely write-off Griezmann's chances of winning the Ballon d'Or this term. However, the Frenchman is definitely one of the amazing superstars who can end the Messi-Ronaldo duopoly, and anyone who underrates him will be doing that at his own peril.

First. The fact that the Ballon d'Or requires consistency will be a great advantage to the attacker. Griezmann has been one of the stand-out performers in Europe for the past few years, evidently sharing the podium with the aforementioned duo in 2016.

While Atletico might have been rather quiet during the 2017/2018 season, the 27-year-old was able to put up some amazing performances that defined his pure class during the campaign. He bagged an amazing 19 goals and 9 assists to help the Rojiblancos finish second on the La Liga table. He also led the club to claim the UEFA Europa League scoring, an amazing brace against Marseille in the final of the tournament.

After making name for himself across Europe and eventually stepping on the ultimate stage in 2016, Griezmann currently has the kind of profile that is required to win the Ballon d'Or. The fact that his nation is among the favorites to win the World Cup is another advantage for the superstar.

Playing alongside the likes of Kylian Mbappe, Paul Pogba, Ousmane Dembele, Ngolo Kante and Samuel Umtiti could boost his performance in the prestigious tournament, which would eventually help him in the race to become the best player in the world.

All stats according to whoscored.com



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Jidonu Mauyon
ANALYST
Jidonu Mauyon is a football enthusiast from Nigeria, who writes for a lot of publications, including the likes of Sportainment, Cube Soccer, Give Me Sport, FootballXtra, and Sportskeeda. He is a great fan of Lionel Messi and he likes to write about Barcelona, Real Madrid, Manchester City and Liverpool. He also covers a lot of topics relating to the EPL, La Liga, Seria A and the Ligue 1. He has been doing great in the field, helping to intensify the passion for the beautiful game by sharing his opinions with his fellow soccer fans across the globe. His works have earned him recognition, notably claiming the Best Essay Writer award in the 2015 Milo Sports Writing Competition. To him, his followers are his best friends and he would go a long way to ensure that he keeps them refreshed and entertained. You love football and he does too, why not follow him so you can burn the passion together?
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