2018 Ballon d’Or – Correct Decision?

As some of you may or may not know, the Ballon d’Or winner was recently announced. The Ballon d’Or is awarded annually and is given to the football player deemed to have performed best over the past year. This has made it quite controversial because this decision is subjective and opinionated therefore there are always going to be some people not happy with the final outcome.


Ballon d’Or is french, and when translated to English it means golden ball, or ball of gold if you translate it literally. This is obviously relating to the appearance of this attractive award.


Over the past decade, starting in 2008, the Ballon d’Or was between two players, I’m sure you can guess them. Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo. With no exception, one of these players has won it from 2008 until 2017.

2000 Ballon d'Or
2000 Ballon d’Or

2018 is the year of change…


This year, 2018, it all changed. Lionel Messi finished 5th in the rankings, Cristiano Ronaldo came 2nd, meaning that there is an open space for top spot. This space was filled my Real Madrid’s Luka Modric.


So, the first thing you may have noticed in that sentence is the position that Lionel Messi placed, 5th. In my eyes, this is extremely surprising, I think he should’ve won it, but 5th, not even top 3? I mean come on….


Moving on to Luka Modric’s win of this prestigious award, I am not totally opposed to it, however I’m not sure he fully deserved it.


He played a big part in the world cup, helping Croatia reach the World Cup final, losing out to France 4-2. This was a huge achievement for Croatia, as their squad does not compare to some other international giants that they managed to beat. Luka Modric definitely played the biggest part in this world cup campaign and can definitely claim that.


Modric also was in the champions league winning squad, as real Madrid beat Liverpool 3-1 in the final. So if we are looking at players who have been in the big finals of 2018, Modric is definitely one to look at. However, my point against this is because, Varane, a French and Real Madrid centre back came 7th.


France won the World Cup, and Real Madrid won the Champions League, so if we are going by who has featured and won the most big name trophies this year, I would argue that Varane should’ve won. Now, I am not saying he should’ve won, the point I’m trying to make is that I feel it should be focused more on an individuals’ performance throughout the year, rather than the amount of finals you have been in.



What were the results?

Luka Modric- 2018 Ballon d'Or Winner
Luka Modric- 2018 Ballon d’Or Winner

1st: Luka Modric (CRO / Real Madrid)

2nd: Cristiano Ronaldo (POR / Real Madrid/Juventus)

3rd: Antoine Griezmann (FRA / Atletico Madrid)

4th Kylian Mbappe (FRA / PSG),

5th: Lionel Messi (ARG / Barcelona)

6th: Mohamed Salah (EGY / Liverpool)

7th: Raphael Varane (FRA / Real Madrid)

8th: Eden Hazard (BEL / Chelsea)

9th: Kevin De Bruyne (BEL / Manchester City)

10th: Harry Kane (ENG / Tottenham)

11th: N’Golo Kante (FRA / Chelsea)

12th: Neymar (BRA / PSG)

13th: Luis Suarez (URU / FC Barcelona)

14th: Thibaut Courtois (BEL / Real Madrid)

15th: Paul Pogba (FRA / Manchester United)

16th: Sergio Aguero (ARG / Manchester City)

17th: Gareth Bale (WAL / Real Madrid)

17th: Karim Benzema (FRA / Real Madrid)

19th: Roberto Firmino (BRA / Liverpool)

Sergio Ramos 19th in the 2018 Ballon d'Or
Sergio Ramos 19th in the 2018 Ballon d’Or

19th: Ivan Rakitic (CRO / FC Barcelona)

19th: Sergio Ramos (SPA / Real Madrid)

22nd: Edinson Cavani (URU / PSG)

22nd: Sadio Mane (SEN / Liverpool)

22nd: Marcelo (BRA / Real Madrid)

25th: Alisson Becker (BRA / Liverpool)

25th: Mario Mandzukic (CRO / Juventus)

25th: Jan Oblak (SLO / Atletico Madrid)

28th: Diego Godin (URU / Atletico Madrid)

29th: Isco (SPA / Real Madrid)

29th: Hugo Lloris (FRA / Tottenham).


Let me know in the comments what you think of these results, do you think someone else should’ve won or would you keep it as it is? I’m interested to hear your views on this.


Why didn’t Messi or Ronaldo win it?


Ronaldo 2018 Ballon d'Or runner up.
Ronaldo 2018 Ballon d’Or runner up.

Personally, I think that Cristiano didn’t win the trophy because he transferred to an Italian team called Juventus. This team plays in the Serie A which is slightly less competitive than the La Liga. Also, Juventus have slightly less star players in the squad than Real Madrid so I feel it was easier for Ronaldo to score goals and do well in that Juventus side. This is all my opinion and I would love to hear yours in the comments section as I understand I’m not right in everybody’s eyes.




Lionel Messi did not have the greatest World Cup, but I feel this was not purely down to him, like the critics say it was. Argentina have a great squad, with the likes of Lionel Messi, Sergio Aguero and Higuain, however they didn’t perform well in the 2018 World Cup and were knocked out by the Champions, France in the Round of 16. This was unfortunate for Messi as the weight of the team was seemingly put on his shoulders as people expected him to carry the team to victory… a huge job for a little man.


In the league however, Messi managed to win the La Liga with Barcelona which is a huge achievement in itself. As well as this he was the top scorer and provided the joint most assists. To me, this doesn’t sound like a season in which Messi would drop 3 places in the Ballon d’Or.


I believe the reason this has happened is because people have become ‘used’ to the type of season that Messi is consistently producing year in year out. It seems as if they have got bored with it which is, in my opinion, a tragedy. This man could be the greatest player of all time, and people are just expecting him to produce an outstanding season each year so it becomes nothing special.


I believe that this year, the Ballon d’Or has lost a lot of its credibility, from me at least. I think that Modric has had a wonderful season and I am very happy for him that he has won the award, however I’m not sure he totally deserves it and I believe the reason he won it is that of his underdog national team, reaching the World Cup Final.




As you can tell by reading this post, it was very opinionated. You can find the facts anywhere else on the news pages of the internet, however this post was slightly different. I wanted to give my views on the situation, and I want to know whether you agree or not. I am totally open to opposition views and I’m exited to read about them in the comments.


To finish off this post I just want to give me final opinion. I believe that Lionel Messi should’ve won the Ballon d’Or, however saying that, Luka Modric had an amazing year and I am happy for him that he has managed to win this award as he may not get the chance to do it again.


I think that the Ballon d’Or judges wanted to give someone else a chance of winning in order to make it more exiting, however I believe that this takes away from the award because in that case, it is not truly saying who the best player in the world is.


Like I said before, please leave your comments below and I would love to read them and get back to you on them. I hope you enjoyed and that I have not offended anyone with my views.


My Soccer Apparel.

12 Replies to “2018 Ballon d’Or – Correct Decision?”

  1. I very much agree with your article Joe! I’m happy that Luka finally broke the iron hold that the Messi-Ronaldo duo had placed on the Ballon d’Or for the last decade. Messi seems to be fading, from what I see, but I’m not watching his every move. What do you think? His performance in the last World Cup was largely uninspired, especially when it mattered most. 

    1. Yeah I definitely agree with some points you made there. I am glad somebody else managed to win the award, because it has been 10 years now! 

      Messi’s performance in the world cup wasn’t great, I do agree with that, however it is difficult to play well when you have a team playing so badly around you. Messi is more of a team player, and that’s difficult when your team isn’t good enough.

      His performance in La Liga has proven that he still has more left in the tank, so I think he still has a few years before he fades yet. 

      Thanks for the comment 🙂

  2. I am not a big fan of soccer. Well… I like, not love. I prefer to play it rather than watching it on the tv. I usually watch some games. But mosly I love to watch the world cup every four years, weird isn’t it? I was shocked when Lionel messi did not make it. But ohh 5th? Come on, not even 2nd that’s sometime I really did not expect. However I don’t think he will let this happen again

    1. I’m as surprised as you are, and no youre right, I think he will use it as motivation to get the award next year, thanks for your comment! 🙂

  3. My hubby shares your view entirely. When the results where announced, he was of the opinion that it shouldn’t have gone to Luka. Just like you, he respects him as a player and appreciates his game, but as world number 1: NO

    Well, on my part I follow football the best I can, but I felt it was somewhat a good break letting someone else other than CR7 or Messi win. Luka may not be as popular as those duo because the limelight is always on them. But he had a good year. If he could come up tops based on whatever criteria they use for selection, then in my opinion he deserves it.

    Thank you for sharing, I respect your opinion.

    1. Yeah, you could be right. I guess if there is certain criteria that they use, then I can’t really dispute it. However I felt like it was just more of an opinionated decision. Either way, I am glad someone other than the main two won the award. Thanks for sharing your opinion, and your husbands. Very interesting indeed 🙂

  4. Hi Joe!

    Good article but I dont agree Messi deserved it this year! Modric has been consistent with Madrid since he joined and even Ronaldo got the credit for the 3CL wins, it wouldnt have happened without Modric pulling the strings!

    Modric led a Croatia to the finals where they lost to an team to team overflowing with talent. They beat some excellent teams to that final. Modric is the engine and hear of both Madrid and Croatia!

    If anyone deserved it this year, its modric! A well deserved winner for 2018 no question about it!

    1. Some good points, I do agree with some of them!

      Thanks for reading my post, and I enjoyed reading your views on the Ballon d’Or 🙂

  5. That’s an honest opinion and salient point you’ve highlighted here. Although, I’ve not been following football closely by watching because I like to play myself rather than shouting in front of the television. 

    However, Lukas Modric winning the ballon d’or came as a surprise to me. I’ve been asking myself at what point did he aced both Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo in performance head to head. Whiles I don’t understand the criteria they used in picking him as the one who deserves this award, bringing a change in this award is also good for competition. 

    1. I much prefer playing than watching also! However, I do enjoy keeping up with the latest news regarding high level football. I agree with you that a change in the award is good for competition- it should hopefully motivate other players a little more too.

  6. Yes, I would agree that Messi should not have been as low.  Every time he gets the ball it seems he creates magic out of thin air.  Love watching him play. The jury for this award is made up of team coaches, team captains and journalists so the fact that the award went to Modric (after going to Messi or Ronaldo so often) is a tribute to him.  Croatia was the most exciting team in the World Cup. The whole world was cheering for them because of the way they won and the fact that they were such a little country going up against traditional favorites and bigger countries.  Perhaps this made the difference in the end for Modric.  Personally, if you are in the top 5 of the best soccer players in the world, sometimes the difference between 1st and 5th can come down to one vote.

    1. Totally agree with everything you said here, in fact I couldn’t of said it better myself. 

      I was cheering for Croatia in the World Cup (After England got knocked out in the Semi’s) not just because they are a small country, but also because they actually played some exiting football! 

      Thanks for your great comment! 

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