Every Ballon d'Or winner since 2008 if only Premier League players could win

FC Barcelona v Athletic Club - La Liga

Winning the Ballon d'Or is the pinnacle for any footballer.

The crowning accolade of individual achievement in the 'beautiful game,' so many legends have taken home the prestigious trophy and the latest winner will be heralded in just a matter of weeks.

Over the last 10 years, the competition has been a duopoly between Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi with the rivalry so close that both players have won five trophies respectively.

However, plenty of other legends have captured the Ballon d'Or in the past with the likes of Zinedine Zidane, Alfredo di Stefano, Johan Cruyff and Ronaldo joining them in the exclusive club.

The duopoly will likely end this season, though, with Luka Modric the odds-on favourite having already won the equivalent UEFA accolade and FIFA's 'The Best' award.

The Ballon d'Or 

That being said, regardless of who wins the Ballon d'Or this time around, football fans can be pretty certain the winner won't be from the Premier League.

Despite being revered as one of the best leagues in the world and arguably the most competitive, Ronaldo is the last player to win the title on English shores back in 2018.

Just because there hasn't been a winner for so long, though, doesn't mean that Premier League players haven't come close in the voting.


The Premier League's winners

That considered, it's definitely interesting to consider who would win the Ballon d'Or if only players from English football counted.

Would there be some obvious victors or some unexpected players make a rush to glory?

Well, the fact France Football publish the exact voting allows football fans to imagine that very scenario and the hypothetical winners can be seen down below. Just imagine.

Here are the victors over the last 10 years:

2008 - Cristiano Ronaldo (Manchester United)

2009 - Wayne Rooney (Manchester United)

2010 - Didier Drogba (Chelsea)

2011 - Wayne Rooney (Manchester United)

2012 - Didier Drogba (Chelsea)

2013 - Robin van Perise (Manchester United)

2014 - Angel Di Maria (Real Madrid/Manchester United)

2015 - Eden Hazard (Chelsea)

2016 - Riyad Mahrez (Leicester City)

2017 - N'Golo Kante (Chelsea)

So there you have it, the best Premier League player in the world over the last 10 years.

It's certainly bizarre imagining players like Kante and Mahrez lifting the Ballon d'Or trophy aloft, but some of the runners-up make the hypothetical situation even more amusing.

Jamie Vardy would have narrowly missed out on the top prize in 2016, Yaya Toure would be collecting a bronze medal in 2015 and Sunderland's Asamoah Gyan would have finished second in 2010.

Chelsea v Manchester United - Premier League

Of course, there's no genuine bias towards the Premier League and the last 10 winners have all plied their trade in Spanish football.

And with Modric, Ronaldo and Messi proving the leading candidates coming into the latest ceremony, the wait for a Premier League winner could continue for some time.

Nevertheless, it will still be interesting to see who comes out on top in the Premier League cohort and who will join the likes of Di Maria and Drogba on the imaginary list.

Who do you think is the best Premier League player in the world? Have your say in the comments section below.

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