Luka Modric wins Ballon d’Or 2018, breaks Ronaldo-Messi decade-long dominance

Luka Modric modric Ballon d'Or 2018 ballon d'or ballon d'or winner Cristiano Ronaldo Lionel Messi Antoine Griezmann kylian mbappe Champions League world cup football news indian express

Modric claimed the trophy as the world's best footballer for the first time to end the 10-year stranglehold of five-time winners Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo.

Two months after the Croatian football team became surprise runners-up at the World Cup in Russia, FIFA gave Modric the men's player of the year award at a ceremony in London in September.

Ronaldo finished in second place, 277 points behind Modrić with France's Antoine Griezmann third, 339 points behind the Croatian.

If Modric or indeed even Mbappe, Varane or even Griezmann manages to pip Ronaldo to the trophy it will be the first time since 2007 that a player from a country other than Argentina and Portugal wins the award.

Modric, 33, was also named FIFA's Best Men's Player earlier this year.

Ronaldo, who joined Real Madrid from Juventus in the summer, came second.

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"The change of position helped me a lot in my career".

The 19-year-old fended off stiff competition from Liverpool's Trent Alexander-Arnold, Borussia Dortmund's Christian Pulisic, Roma's Justin Kluivert and AC Milan duo Gianluigi Donnarumma and Patrick Cutrone among other young stars. "It's a huge step for women's football", Hegerberg said.

The Ballon d'Or has evaded many great players over the years including the likes of Xavi, Andres Iniesta, Paul Scholes and Andrea Pirlo. Brazil star Neymar was third previous year but only 12th this time.

Luka Modric said he wants to retire at Real Madrid after beating Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi to the Ballon d'Or. I have sensational emotions at the moment that are really hard to describe in words. Modric had never previously been in the top three.

The Ballon d'Or was first awarded in 1956 and was partnered with soccer's world governing body Federation Internationale de Football Association under the title "The Best" from 2010 to 2015, until becoming its own entity again. France coach Didier Deschamps said a French player should have won the award.

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