- Messi nominated for Ballon d’Or
- Haaland and Mbappe also in for prize
- Rabiot backs younger strikers to win
Messi is seen as one of the favourites to win the prize for the eighth time in his career, but Paris Saint-Germain star Mbappe and Manchester City striker Haaland are also in the picture.
Mbappe helped fire France to the World Cup final and scored a hat-trick in the decisive game, while Haaland enjoyed a record-breaking season that saw him win the Champions League, Premier League and FA Cup with City.
THE BIGGER PICTURE
Messi has been regarded as a top candidate to win the prize for the eighth time in his career after guiding Argentina to World Cup glory. The Albiceleste captain scored seven times in the competition, including two in the final as his nation won the trophy for the first time since 1986.
He has since gone on to guide Inter Miami to their first ever trophy, scoring 10 goals in seven matches as they won the Leagues Cup.
Despite his exploits, however, France and Juventus midfielder Rabiot feels the younger strikers are the real frontrunners.
WHAT THEY SAID
“I hear a lot of people saying Messi will win it,” he said to RMC Sport. “But on a sporting level, it will be between Kylian Mbappe and Erling Haaland. Saying which one of those two will be difficult, depends what it’s based on. No one ever agrees, but it will be between those two. I exclude everyone else.”
WHAT HAPPENS NEXT?
The 2023 Ballon d’Or winner will be announced at a ceremony on October 30.