Good evening everybody and welcome along to this MARCA in English live blog to take you through the hotly anticipated Ballon d’Or 2023 ceremony in Paris.
The Ballon d’Or is an esteemed individual award in the world of football, established by France Football magazine in 1956, and Lionel Messi is expected to get his hands on the men’s prize for the eighth time in his incredible career – owing largely to his triumph with Argentina at the 2022 World Cup. Currently with seven to his name, Messi holds the record for the most Ballon d’Or wins.
Erling Haaland is another of the favourites for the men’s prize, while the women’s Ballon d’Or is likely to go to one of Spain’s 2023 Women’s World Cup winners, with Aitana Bonmati seen by many as the frontrunner after Spain and Barcelona teammate Alexia Putellas has won each of the last two.
Ballon d’Or 2023 LIVE: Winner, results and latest updates from the award ceremony
Bellingham wins the Kopa Trophy!
Real Madrid’s Jude Bellingham will likely win the Ballon d’Or in the future, but this year he claims the Kopa Trophy!
Emiliano Martinez’s pride
Argentina’s World Cup-winning goalkeeper Emiliano Martinez has spoken to TNT Sports upon his arrival in Paris.
“It’s a great achievement for me to be in this kind of ceremony. It’s a proud moment for me and my family, and I just want to enjoy it.
“What we did with the national team was really incredible and we’re still achieving things, winning games with Argentina and Aston Villa. It’s a proud moment for me and my country, and life moves also on.”
Can Haaland win the Ballon d’Or?
If it’s not going to be Messi, most people expect Erling Haaland to be winning the big men’s prize tonight. He has arrived in Paris.
Places 11-15 announced
We’re ready to learn the Top 10 now, with a number of big names just missing out.
11: Mohamed Salah (Liverpool & Egypt)
12: Robert Lewandowski (Barcelona & Poland)
13: Yassine Bounou (Sevilla, Al Hilal & Morocco)
14: Ilkay Gundogan (Man City, Barcelona & Germany)
15: Emiliano Martinez (Aston Villa & Argentina)
Bono takes 13th
The former Sevilla man is one of many to likely be recognised for an excellent World Cup last winter.
Gundogan in 14th
A Champions League winner and Barcelona’s goalscorer in the recent Clasico, Ilkay Gundogan, can’t make the top ten.
Bellingham places 18th in Ballon d’Or
Jude Bellingham will be backed to win the prize in the future, but he has to settle for 18th place in 2023. There is a real argument to say that he is the best player in the world at the moment, but the award takes in 12 months’ work.
Into the top 20
Places 15-20 have been named for the 2023 Ballon d’Or, and last year’s winner Karim Benzema has dropped as low as 16th.
Where does Messi keep keep his trophies?
When you win as many trophies as Lionel Messi, it is hard to find space for them all.
His 44 trophies are the most of all time. In the past year alone, the 36-year-old has added a World Cup with Argentina and a Leagues Cup trophy with his new club Inter Miami. He has the chance to turn those into a record-setting eighth Ballon d’Or, the trophy annually awarded to the world’s best male footballer.
While some athletes stash their awards in the basement or display them in a huge trophy cabinet, the Barcelona legend returned his previous seven Ballon d’Or awards to the club museum.
Fans, youth players and new signings alike can go see Messi’s impressive display at the Barcelona Museum. When players like Joao Cancelo and Joao Felix signed for Barcelona, they stood in awe of the Argentine’s legacy when taking a tour of the facility.
If Lionel Messi does in fact take home his eighth Ballon d’Or, he may be looking for a new place for it. Messi only played for Paris Saint-Germain, Argentina and Inter Miami during the calendar year which makes him eligible for the award, so it wouldn’t make much sense to give it to the Barcelona museum.
Messi’s Ballon d’Or dominance
Messi dominated the competition that everyone wants to dominate in history: a World Cup, which has more power than any other title, especially if you do it while being the tournament’s best player and Silver Shoe (seven goals and three assists in seven games) behind Kylian Mbappe. Messi scored in the round of 16, quarter-finals, semi-finals and in that epic final against France.
MARCA asked the Argentine in August this year about the possibility of receiving this eighth Ballon d’Or and this was his response in his first appearance as an Inter Miami player: “I think I’ve said it many times during my career. The Ballon d’Or is a very important award because of what it means. For its recognition, it is one of the most beautiful awards in the world on an individual level. But I never gave importance, in inverted commas, to individual awards. The most important thing was the collective awards. I was lucky enough to win everything in my career, and the World Cup was what I was missing. That’s why now, after Qatar, I’m thinking much less about that prize. Now I’m enjoying my moment. I’m not thinking about the Ballon d’Or. If it comes, good; and if not, I’m satisfied that I have achieved my objectives and… now I have others with this club. This is what we came here for, to help the club win titles and on a personal level I’m also thinking about that”.
Messi aiming for his eighth Ballon d’Or
It could be another special year for Messi with an award that he has dominated since 2009, as he has lifted it in these years: 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2015, 2019 and 2021.
And all of them, without any major contestation, except for 2021, in which he shared merits with Robert Lewandowski. An eighth Ballon d’Or that would be far ahead of Cristiano Ronaldo’s five (2008, 2013, 2014, 2016 and 2017). Behind are the three of Michel Platini, Marco van Basten and Johan Cruyff.
Messi would again be the ‘king of Paris’ – last year he was not even among the nominees – after being the ‘king of Qatar’ in December 2022.
The Ballon d’Or rewards the 2022-23 season and not even Erling Haaland’s triple with Manchester City would hold sway with the voting journalists in judging who should be this year’s winner.
Haaland won the Champions League, Premier League and FA Cup, and scored 52 goals in 53 total games for City.
Who votes for the Ballon d’Or 2023?
The voting process also evolved this year, with 100 journalists from the top 100 FIFA-ranked countries participating as jurors.
This is a reduction from the previous system, where up to 170 journalists voted in the men’s category, and there are 50 jurors in the women’s category.
These changes are expected to introduce more objectivity and focus on individual excellence in the Ballon d’Or award, making it an even more prestigious recognition in the world of football.
Ballon d’Or voting: New voting rules and criteria
In 2023, there are significant changes to the Ballon d’Or evaluation criteria.
Individual performance and the candidate’s decisive and impressive character take precedence over the collective aspect and trophies won, as well as the player’s class and sense of fair play.
This shift could favor players such as Messi and Erling Haaland, known for their extraordinary skills.
Where can I watch the 2023 Ballon d’Or Awards?
In the United States, broadcast rights are held by Paramount+. L’Equipe will also have a live stream on its website or the channel of Spanish streamer Ibai Llanos.
When and where is the Ballon d’Or 2023 awarded?
The Ballon d’Or 2023 will be awarded next Monday, October 30, in both the men’s and women’s categories at the Theatre du Chatelet in Paris.
The Kopa Trophy will also be awarded to the outstanding player under 21 years of age, and the Yashin Trophy to the most outstanding goalkeeper.
What time does the Ballon d’Or 2023 awards ceremony start?
The 2023 Ballon d’Or Gala will begin at 14:00 EDT, 11:00 PDT. That makes it a 21:00 CET start – local time in Paris.
List of Nominees for the Ballon d’Or 2023
* Josko Gvardiol
* Jamal Musiala
* Andre Onana
* Karim Benzema
* Mohamed Salah
* Bukayo Saka
* Kevin De Bruyne
* Jude Bellingham
* Randal Kolo Muani
* Bernardo Silva
* Khvicha Kvaratskhelia
* Nicolò Barella
* Emiliano Martínez
* Rúben Dias
* Erling Haaland
* Martin Odegaard
* Ilkay Gündogan
* Yassine Bounou
* Julián Álvarez
* Vinicius Jr
* Antoine Griezmann
* Lionel Messi
* Lautaro Martínez
* Robert Lewandowski
* Kim Min-jae
* Luka Modric
* Kylian Mbappé
* Victor Osimhen
* Vinícius Jr
* Yui Hasegawa
* Alexandra Popp
* Aitana Bonmatí
* Guro Reiten
* Ewa Pajor
* Patricia Guijarro
* Sam Kerr
* Daphne Van Domselaar
* Lena Oberdorf
* Hinta Miyazawa
* Millie Bright
* Salma Paralluelo
* Sophia Smith
* Hayley Raso
* Amanda Ilestedt
* Georgia Stanway
* Olga Carmona
* Fridolina Rolfo
* Rachel Daly
* Alba Redondo
* Linda Caicedo
* Kadidiatou Diani
* Khadija Shaw
* Mapi Leon
* Mary Earps
* Asisat Oshoala
* Wendie Renard
* Katie McCabe
* Jill Roord