Surprising names appeared in FourFourTwo's 12 best players without a Ballon d'Or list

Spain v Russia: Round of 16 - 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia

The Ballon d'Or is a trophy that has often been surrounded by controversy, with the results often accused of being a combination of merit and political bias.

Despite this, the end of season award is still held in high regard and any player who receives the accolade is automatically attached with the 'world class' moniker.

From Marco van Basten to Zinedine Zidane to Sir Stanley Matthews' inaugural success in 1956, the trophy has been handed to a plethora of football's elite.

Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo have won 10 Ballon d'Or's- five each- in the last 10 years, in what has been the most dominant spell from two players in the trophy's history.

Football magazine, FourFourTwo have created a list of 12 players who failed to win the coveted individual award.

The list will no doubt divide opinion as fans will have different ideas on what classifies as an attribute that is 'Ballon d'Or' worthy.


Speaking of dividing opinion, kicking off the list is Real Madrid captain Sergio Ramos who despite his controversial antics, has been a stalwart in Madrid's recent successes.

Ryan Giggs is next, predominantly due to his longevity and trophy count, with former Germany captain Philipp Lahm appearing on the list for similar reasons.

The flamboyant Brazilian Neymar, appears at number 10- some would say surprisingly high- however, at just 26 years old, the PSG forward has plenty of time to claim the crown.


Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Thierry Henry are at seven and eight respectfully, despite a monumental 803 club goals between them, neither were able to earn the top prize.

Franck Ribery earnt a third-place finish in 2013, but club team-mate Arjen Robben is the representative for Bayern Munich on this list.

Ronaldo and Messi's superiority speaks volumes when the top five consists of Barcelona's number nine Luis Suarez and Juventus' legendary goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon.

Juventus v Hellas Verona FC - Serie A

The Uruguayan could only muster a fifth-place finish in 2015 despite 59 goals in that particular season.

Buffon managed a second place finish in 2006 only beaten by fellow World Cup winner and captain Fabio Cannavaro. 

The top three is made up of Xavi, Paolo Maldini and Andres Iniesta, players with an abundance of talent, experience and trophies however no Ballon d'Or to add to their trophy cabinet. 

Xavi and Maldini's exemption could be correlated with the fact that attacking minded players have often scooped up the prize, whereas Iniesta who could penetrate in attacking areas looks to be the biggest victim of Ronaldo and Messi's success.


Who do you think deserves the Ballon d'Or the most? Have your say in the comments section below.

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