So the FIFA Ballon d’Or award for 2013 has finally been announced and it unsurprisingly went to Portugal and Real Madrid forward Cristiano Ronaldo.
So the FIFA Ballon d’Or award for 2013 has finally been announced and it unsurprisingly went to Portugal and Real Madrid forward Cristiano Ronaldo. The fan favourite was in ferocious form in 2013 and managed to beat competition from Franck Ribery and Lionel Messi to pick up his second accolade.
No doubt Messi won’t be too disappointed having won it the past three occasions.
In a ceremony slightly overlooked by a dubious voting system, the Portuguese striker had to fight to the final hurdle to beat Ribery and Messi. Ribery, who has been in fantastic form for Bayern, managed to get his hands on the Champions League trophy in 2013 as well as picking up the German domestic honour as Bayern topped the Bundesliga.
Messi saw his formidable Barca team top La Liga but saw his own season plagued by injury.
The votes from the media however would have seen Ribery beat the flamboyant forward and Lionel Messi to pull off an against-the-odds victory over the pair who were always deemed to be the forerunners for the biggest solo accolade in the footballing world.
The votes also saw both Messi and Ronaldo vote for other players in order to stop their rival getting the upper hand.
Of course attacking players always have more chance in awards and rarely do more defensive players get any form of serious recognition in the men’s game.
This doesn’t seem to be the case in the female game and German goalkeeper Nadine Angerer became the first goalkeeper to be named Women’s World Player of the Year. The last defender to get the men’s nod was Cannavaro in 2006.
Coach of the year
Also presented at the ceremony was the FIFA coach of the year and 2013 was a funny old year for coaches. Sir Alex Ferguson retired from management and left David Moyes to take over whilst Chelsea saw the return of the Special One. The winner though was Jupp Heynckes who saw his Bayern team break Europe and pick up the German treble. Runner-up was the Scot who saw yet another Premier League trophy and in third was Jurgen Klopp who with Borussia Dortmund was Champions League runner-up.
As well as the Ballon d’Or the FIFA Puskas award, the best goal of 2013 was unveiled at football’s biggest awards bash. This year the goal of 2013 went to Zlatan Ibrahimovich for his goal for Sweden against England. The keen eyed amongst you may realise that the England vs Sweden match was in 2012 making Zlatan’s goal of 2013 scored in 2012 and presented in 2014—two years of longevity for you.
Team of the year
Along with the celebrations FIFA also unveil are pro-XI of the year, an elite team made up of the 11 best players from across the globe.
In recent years the award has been dominated by Spanish players and this year wasn’t exactly a derivation from that with three of the 11 coming from Spain. Their closest rivals were Germany and Brazil with two players each. For the first time since 2007 the goalkeeper of the year wasn’t Iker Casillas. The Spanish captain wasn’t favoured much at Madrid in 2013 and in his absence Bayern goalkeeper Manuel Neuer was able to take the guardian spot between the posts.
Making up the FIFA FIFpro World XI were:
GK – Manuel Neuer
Defenders – Dani Alves, Thiago Silva, Sergio Ramos, Philipp Lahm
Midfielders – Franck Ribery, Xavi, Iniesta
Forwards – Lionel Messi, Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Cristiano Ronaldo