Lionel Messi wins historic seventh Ballon d’Or
Lionel Messi has won a record seventh Ballon d’Or, beating Robert Lewandowski and Jorginho to the title.
The forward inspired Argentina to their first Copa America title since 1993, ending his long wait for silverware at international level.
He also lifted the Copa del Rey with Barcelona before joining Paris Saint-Germain last summer.
Messi collected his seventh Ballon d’Or during a ceremony in the French capital on Monday evening.
The Paris Saint-Germain superstar faced stern competition from the likes of Bayern Munich’s Robert Lewandowski and Chelsea’s Jorginho to win the world’s most-coveted individual accolade once again.
The star-studded shortlist for the iconic golden ball trophy also included Liverpool’s Mohammed Salah and Manchester United’s Cristiano Ronaldo.
Earlier, Lewandowski was named Striker of the Year – one of the two new awards introduced by France Football for this year’s Ballon d’Or.
The Polish hitman scored an incredible 41 goals in 29 Bundesliga games last term.
He has brought that blistering form into the current season, hitting 14 goals in his first 13 Bundesliga outings.
Also on Monday, Barcelona midfielder Alexia Putellas became the third woman to win the Ballon d’Or.
The 27-year-old captained her club to the Champions League title last season, ending Lyon’s five-year reign.
She was recently named UEFA Player of the Year and also lifted the Spanish league and cup last term, completing the treble.
Gianluigi Donnarumma also won the Yashin Trophy, the award for best goalkeeper.
The Italian claimed the prize ahead of Chelsea and Senegal’s Edouard Mendy.
The goalkeeper helped Italy win Euro 2020, earning the Player of the Tournament award for his efforts.
Barcelona youngster Pedri was also named winner of the Kopa Trophy, the award for best performing player under the age of 21.
It came as no surprise to many to see the 19-year-old Spaniard win the Kopa Trophy, as he recently won the Golden Boy prize.
Pedri also finished 24th in this year’s Ballon d’Or.