Argentina football superstar, Lionel Messi did not make the shortlist for FIFA’s men’s player of the year award, losing out to Cristiano Ronaldo, Luka Modric and Mohamed Salah.
For the past 11 years, Barcelona and Argentina forward, Messi had featured in the top three consecutively. He was runner-up in the prize in 2007 and 2008 before winning the title for the first of five years in 2009.
Portugal and Juventus forward Ronaldo, like Messi, is a five-time winner, and has reached the top three alongside Croatia and Real Madrid midfielder Modric and Salah, the Egypt and Liverpool forward.
Messi’s subsequent wins came in 2010, 2011, 2012 and 2015, while Ronaldo won the title in 2008, 2013, 2014, 2016 and 2017.
The award was first introduced as the FIFA world player of the year prize (1991-2009), before becoming the Ballon d’Or (2010-15) and subsequently part of FIFA’s ‘The Best’ awards.