How close Messi came to missing out on Ballon d’Or & the Ronaldo-Salah gap

How close Lionel Messi came to missing out on Ballon d’Or & the hefty gap between Ronaldo and Salah


The official voting figures for the Ballon d’Or have been revealed on Monday night, providing an insight into just how close things proved at the very top of the final rankings.

Messi secures number 7

The headline news across the football world this evening has of course come in the form of the awarding of the latest ‘Golden Ball’.

After France Football’s annual ceremony was cancelled last year owing to the Covid-19 pandemic, the most sought after individual prize in football was handed out for the first time since 2019.

Paris Saint-Germain superstar Lionel Messi, in the end, reigned supreme, adding a record-breaking 7th Ballon d’Or to his trophy cabinet, amid a star-studded affair in the French capital:

Rounding out the podium, meanwhile, were Bayern Munich hitman Robert Lewandowski and Chelsea’s Champions League and Euro 2020 double winner Jorginho.

Lewy pipped to the post

As alluded to above, though, had a very small number of those to have been trusted with votes for this year’s award opted for Lewandowski over Messi, then things could have been oh so different at Monday’s ceremony…

This comes with an insight into the exact number of points – the ultimately deciding factor in a player’s Ballon d’Or ranking – secured by the top-two having been forthcoming online.

Messi, all told, bagged a total of 613 points.

‘Lewy’, though, was in it right until the last, having garnered just 33 points less, at 580.

Elsewhere, in another of the results to have drummed up much talk, Cristiano Ronaldo edging out Mohamed Salah for 6th spot actually didn’t prove a particularly close affair at all.

In fact, Manchester United’s talisman racked up 178 points, with his Liverpool counterpart some way back, on 121.


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Premier League table

# Team MP D P
1 Chelsea FC 13 26 30
2 Manchester City 13 20 29
3 Liverpool FC 13 28 28
4 West Ham United 13 8 23
5 Arsenal FC 13 -2 23
6 Wolverhampton Wanderers 13 0 20
7 Tottenham Hotspur 12 -6 19
8 Manchester United 13 -1 18
9 Brighton & Hove Albion 13 -2 18
10 Leicester City 13 -3 18
11 Crystal Palace 13 0 16
12 Brentford FC 13 0 16
13 Aston Villa 13 -3 16
14 Everton FC 13 -4 15
15 Southampton FC 13 -7 14
16 Watford FC 13 -6 13
17 Leeds United 13 -8 12
18 Burnley FC 12 -6 9
19 Norwich City 13 -20 9
20 Newcastle United 13 -14 6
Player Team Goals
Salah, Mohamed Liverpool FC 11
Vardy, Jamie Leicester City 9
Mane, Sadio Liverpool FC 7
Jota, Diogo Liverpool FC 7
Antonio, Michail West Ham United 6
Dennis, Emmanuel Watford FC 5
King, Joshua Watford FC 5
Cornet, Maxwel Burnley FC 5
Raphinha Leeds United 5
Sarr, Ismaila Watford FC 5
James, Reece Chelsea FC 4
Fernandes, Bruno Manchester United 4
Gallagher, Conor Crystal Palace 4
Ronaldo, Cristiano Manchester United 4
Toney, Ivan Brentford FC 4
Smith-Rowe, Emile Arsenal FC 4
Benteke, Christian Crystal Palace 4
Aubameyang, Pierre-Emerick Arsenal FC 4
Son, Heung Min Tottenham Hotspur 4
Zaha, Wilfried Crystal Palace 4

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