It wasn't a dream, Lionel Messi really did finish a lowly fifth in the Ballon d'Or.
On a celebratory night in Paris, Luka Modric became the first 'human' to win the award since Kaka in 2007 and there wasn't even a place in the top three for Messi this year.
Although there's certainly a strong argument for both Modric and Cristiano Ronaldo in 2018, almost everyone is in agreement that Messi deserved much more than fifth spot.
The 31-year-old has provided more goals and assists cumulatively than Ronaldo and has started the 2018-19 in phenomenal form but to no avail.
Regardless of France Football's verdict, though, many football fans will not only consider Messi the deserving winner but the greatest footballer of all time.
Messi finished fifth in voting
Yet, as bizarre as Messi finishing fifth may seem, the Ballon d'Or voting is a seriously extensive progress and a designated journalist from every nation gets a vote.
Naturally, there were some strange votes with Saint Kitts and Nevis bizarrely deciding that Alisson Becker had a better year than both Messi and Ronaldo, ultimately voting for Neymar.
On the whole, though, journalists directed their praise towards Luka Modric and that includes England's very own Henry Winter.
Argentine journalist's voting
But despite the journalist's having complete control over their choices, a number of writers plumped for their compatriots with the French and Croatian voters selecting Mbappe and Modric respectively.
Well, that wasn't quite the case with Argentina as Enrique Wolff of ESPN Radio rejected the opportunity to select Messi as his number one choice.
There's an understanding that Messi isn't appreciated as much as fans would think back in Argentina and Wolff certainly didn't think his compatriot was worthy of the award.
His full voting for France Football read as follows:
1. Antoine Griezmann
2. Raphael Varane
3. Lionel Messi
4. Luka Modric
5. Cristiano Ronaldo
The only consolation is that Wolff has dodged the headlines by keeping Ronaldo below him.
That being said, it's certainly interesting to consider that the Argentinean actually considered Messi more deserving of the award than the winner Modric.
He clearly placed an emphasis on the importance of the World Cup, though, and picked Griezmann as his winner despite not reaching the same individual statistics.
Just below and it's Varane who grabbed the silver medal as the only player to win both the World Cup and Champions League in 2018.
Of course, every writer is fully entitled to their own decision and although France Football decide on criteria, the voting system is ultimately subjective.
There's no obligation for Argentina's representative to vote for Messi, just like Portugal's writer wasn't forced to pick Ronaldo.
Nevertheless, on the back of Messi's incredible achievements personally this year, it remains bizarre that more didn't give him the nod.
Who do you think deserved to win the Ballon d'Or? Have your say in the comments section below.News Now - Sport News