Ballon d'Or 2017 Power Rankings - August
Who is expected to win the Ballon d'Or 2017?
Ballon d'Or has now become a barometer to measure some of the best players in the world of football. The race to win the coveted award has been dominated by Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo for the past 9 years, with the Argentine being crowned the best player in the world on 5 occasions, while his arch-rival, Ronaldo, has won it on 4 occasions.
The Portuguese sensation is currently the odds on favourite to be crowned the Ballon d'Or 2017 winner, having helped his club retain UEFA Champions League, while also helping them win the La Liga title.
Here we take a look at the 5 leading contenders for the prestigious award handed out by France Football:
#5 Sergio Ramos
Replacing Kylian Mbappe at #5 is Real Madrid captain Sergio Ramos. The AS Monaco sensation dropped out of the top 5 after failing to secure a starting berth under Leonardo Jardim in the new season.
Also, with Mbappe joining Paris Saint-Germain, the 18-year-old will surely be competing for game time with other stars, thereby further reducing his chances to win the Ballon d'Or. And when Neymar plays for a team, unless you are Lionel Messi, you cannot be better than him.
Coming back to Sergio Ramos, the Spanish international played a key role in Zinedine Zidane's side doing the double last season and continues to lead from the front - if and when his team requires a leader.
The 31-year-old made 44 appearances for Los Blancos last season, scoring 10 goals while assisting another 3, all that for a defender.
Even Ramos himself has fancied his chances of lifting the coveted trophy. Speaking in a recent interview with Italian magazine Undici, Ramos said: "Recently it has been a personal matter between Messi and Cristiano.But Cannavaro, for example, won it and I do not see it as crazy for me to win it. If they give it to me, it will be a historical moment."
However, for now, despite overtaking Kylian Mbappe, Ramos is only 5th in the Ballon d'Or power rankings.