Lionel Messi has been confirmed the winner of the 2023 Ballon d’Or as he becomes the first player to win the award a record eight times.
Before this year’s edition of the award, the 36-year-old Argentine football icon had won the award for a record 7 times, two more than his rival, Cristiano Ronaldo.
Following Messi’s victory in the 2023 edition of the Ballon d’Or, the Argentine football icon has won the award three more times than 38-year-old Ronaldo who currently plays for Al Nassr of Saudi Arabia.
Aside from being the only player to win the Ballon d’Or a record 8 times, Lionel Messi has become the only player to win the Ballon d’Or outside Europe as he is currently playing at Inter Miami in the United States.
Also, Messi has become the first player to win the Ballon d’Or in three different countries, six times in Spain while playing for FC Barcelona, once in France, while playing for Paris Saint Germain, and once in the United States, while playing for Inter Miami.
Lionel Messi won the 2023 edition of the award ahead of Haaland who won the treble with Manchester City last season – Premier League, FA Cup, and UEFA Champions – majorly because the football icon helped Argentina to win the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar, where he won the best player of the tournament.
Aside from that, Messi scored 21 goals and provided 20 assists in 41 games in all competitions for PSG last season, helping the club win French Super Cup, and the French Ligue 1 title before joining Inter Miami during the last summer transfer window.
Inter Miami co-owner, David Beckham presented the 2023 Ballon d’Or to Messi as the Argentine icon succeeds Karim Benzema of France and Al-Ittihad who won the 2022 edition of the award.
See winners of other categories of the 2023 Ballon d’Or
1. Jude Bellingham won the 2023 Kopa Trophy.
2. Vinicius Junior Won the 2023 Socrates Award.
3. Emiliano Martinez won the 2023 Yachine Trophy.
4. FC Barcelona Femeni won the 2023 women’s club of the year.
5. Erling Haaland won the 2023 Gerd Muller Award.
6. Manchester City won the 2023 men’s club of the year.
7. Aitana Bonmati won the 2023 Women’s Ballon d’Or.