Lionel Messi has won a record-extending seventh Ballon d’or after beating Robert Lewandowski to the most sought-after individual prize in football. Messi won the last edition of Ballon d’or in 2019. The 2020 awards were canceled because of covid. Messi has also won this award in 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2015, and 2019.
What got Messi the award was an impressive run across 56 games for his club and country in 2021. He racked up an outstanding 41 goals and 17 assists in all competitions, winning the Copa del Rey with former club Barcelona and the Copa America with Argentina. Despite the slow start in his new club Paris Saint Germain his remaining performance of this season was still outstanding.
He was favorite for this year’s award alongside the Bayern Munich talisman Robert Lewandowski. Messi was confirmed as the winner at Monday evening’s Ceremony. Lewandowski came in second with Chelsea’s Jorginho taking the final spot on the podium.
Messi captained Argentina to Copa America Success in July, ending their 28-year drought in major international competitions. It was surely this long-awaited first trophy success with Argentina that gave him an edge over other contenders of the Award.
Messi, while speaking from the stage last night, said “It’s amazing to be here again. Two years ago I had no idea what the future would be like. Today I am in Paris and I am happy. I really want to continue fighting for new challenges. I don’t know how much I have left, but I hope it’s a lot because I Love football. “
He further added, “ Thanks to all my teammates from Barcelona, PSG, and Argentina. I was missing something ( Copa America), but this year I was able to get the dream I wanted so much. It's a special night for me.”
He had some kind words for his closest rival too. “It’s an honour to fight Lewandowski. You should have got this last year. You are a winner, you should have this prize at home too”
Congratulations Leo Messi and @alexiaputellas winners of the #BallonDor2021, congratulations also to all nominated players!? I won Striker of the Year Award and no Player can win an individual award without strongest team and loyal fans behind him. Thank you for your support?? pic.twitter.com/I6j4BtluYS— Robert Lewandowski (@lewy_official) November 29, 2021
Bayern Munich’s Robert Lewandowski won the “Striker of the year” while Italy stopper Gianluigi Donnarumma clinched the best goalkeeper award. The Kopa Trophy for best young player went to Barcelona’s Pedri. Chelsea, meanwhile, won the best club award.