Who is going to win the Ballon d’Or? Follow live updates and results
Lionel Messi is expected to collect his seventh Ballon d’Or award at a glittering 2021 ceremony in Paris this evening. Messi is the favourite after winning the Copa America with Argentina earlier this year, despite one of his less impressive years at club level: Barcelona finished third in La Liga and fell in the first knockout round of the Champions League. However, Messi scored two goals as Barca won the Copa del Rey final and he was La Liga’s top goalscorer once more, before switching to Paris Saint-Germain in the summer.
Robert Lewandowski was widely expected to win last year’s award before it was cancelled due to the pandemic, and the Bayern Munich striker is in the running once again. Chelsea’s Jorginho is another candidate, having won the Champions League with his club and Euro 2020 with his country Italy a couple of months later.
Barcelona’s Alexia Putellas and Arsenal’s Vivianne Miedema lead the charge for the women’s award. Putellas scored in the final as the all-conquering Barca won the Champions League, while Miedema is both Netherlands and Women’s Super League all-time leading goalscorer and racked up goals at the Olympic Games. Spain’s Pedri is expected to win the Kopa Trophy for the best men’s young player, while Chelsea’s Edouard Mendy and PSG’s Gianluigi Donnarumma lead the running for the men’s goalkeeper award, the Yashin Trophy.
The ceremony takes place tonight at the Chatelet Theatre in Paris, starting from 7.30pm GMT. It will be streamed live online via L’Equipe’s YouTube channel, and Eurosport will also be streaming the award on its website and the Eurosport app. The ceremony is expected to end around 9pm GMT. You can follow all the latest updates below.
Ballon d’Or 2021: Harry Kane ranked 23rd
There’s the second of four English players from the shortlist: Harry Kane comes in 23rd.
The Spurs striker has had a shocker of a season so far domestically, but last year won the Golden Boot again in the Premier League and helped fire England to the Euro 2020 final, of course.
Ballon d’Or: Kopa contender Pedri in 24th
He’s in the running to win the Kopa Trophy tonight, but Barcelona’s midfield teenager Pedri doesn’t quite crack the top 20 this time around for the main event.
24th after what was effectively his second year in senior football is mightily special, all the same!
Ballon d’Or 2021: Phil Foden named in 25th place
Manchester City starlet Phil Foden is next out, placed 25th best player in world football. What a phenomenal achievement for the 21-year-old.
Ballon d’Or 2021: Man City’s Ruben Dias joint 26th
Three more names are out and we have three tied in joint 26th.
Nicolo Barella of Inter Milan, Manchester City’s central defender Ruben Dias and Spain and Villarreal forward Gerard Moreno all announced together.
Ballon d’Or 2021: Barcelona dominate the Feminin nominees
Five of the 20 shortlisted players for the Women’s Ballon d’Or play for Barcelona; given their stunning Champions League success last season it’s little surprise. As we’ve already mentioned, Alexia Putellas is the big favourite – but all her team-mates must be in the running too.
Ballon d’Or 2021: Legends pick their winners
Plenty of people have something to say on who the recipients of the award should be tonight.
Dani Alves says it should go to Christian Eriksen after his Euro 2020 collapse and subsequent recovery, saying it would “send a strong message” for football to have more sensitivity.
Francesco Totti would give it to Robert Lewandowski, after years of Messi and Ronaldo domination.
Ballon d’Or 2021: Reveal countdown begins with Modric and Azpilicueta
And the first two players are revealed together, Real Madrid’s Luka Modric and Chelsea’s Champions League-winning defender Cesar Azpilicueta both come in 29th.
The Crotian midfielder is of course a former winner of the Ballon d’Or, claiming the prize in 2018.
Ballon d’Or 2021: Here we go!
France Football teasing us with a mini announcement instead of the first revealed players…
Ballon d’Or 2021: Neymar out for the rest of the year
Neymar is on the list of nominees for tonight, though is not expected to be anywhere near the front-runners after a fairly disappointing time of matters – including defeat in the Copa America final.
His 2021 isn’t going to get any better either, as an ankle ligament injury is set to keep him sidelined for 6-8 weeks, it has just been announced. No more action for him until after the winter break and into the new year with PSG.
How low down the list of nominees will he appear tonight? The Ballon d’Or reveal is about to begin!
Ballon d’Or 2021: Clubs arriving for ceremony
The clubs are cranking up the proganda for their own players now as the excitement builds ahead of the start of the big reveal!