The Ballon d’Or is the most prestigious individual award in football, as well as being a popular market for football betting fans.

Awarded to the best footballer in a specific year, the FIFA World Player of the Year award is the pinnacle of the sport and every player aspires to claim the accolade at some point in their professional career.

Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo, arguably the two greatest players of all-time, shared the award for an entire decade before Luka Modric’s success in 2018. Betting expert betting tips were spot on with Modric breaking up the Messi-Ronaldo duopoly.

However, Messi now has the most Ballon d'Or wins after regaining the award 12 months later.

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Liverpool defender Virgil van Dijk pushed Messi close in the FIFA Best Player award rankings though and the Dutchman could push for a place on the Ballon d'Or winners list in the near future.

With the 2020 Ballon d'Or ceremony cancelled, focus now turns to the 2021 FIFA Best Footballer of the Year award. Who will claim the Ballon d'Or next year? Find the best football tips today here at 888sport.

For now, it is time to look at the players on the Ballon d'Or winners list. The FIFA Best Player Award has been awarded to some of the greatest footballers of all-time, so let's get to it...

Ballon d'Or Wins:

  • 1956: Stanley Matthews (Blackpool)

  • 1957: Alfredo Di Stefano (Real Madrid)

  • 1958: Raymond Kopa (Real Madrid)

  • 1959: Alfredo Di Stefano (Real Madrid)

  • 1960: Luis Suarez (Barcelona)

  • 1961: Omar Sivori (Juventus)

  • 1962: Josef Masopust (Dukla Prague)

  • 1963: Lev Yashin (Dynamo Moscow)

  • 1964: Denis Law (Manchester United)

  • 1965: Eusebio (Benfica)

1965 Ballon d'Or winner Eusebio
Photo credit: Pool / AP Photo


  • 1966: Bobby Charlton (Manchester United)

  • 1967: Florian Albert (Ferencvaros)

  • 1968: George Best (Manchester United)

  • 1969: Gianni Rivera (AC Milan)

  • 1970: Gerd Muller (Bayern Munich)

  • 1971: Johan Cruyff (Ajax)

  • 1972: Franz Beckenbauer (Bayern Munich)

  • 1973: Johan Cruyff (Barcelona)

  • 1974: Johan Cruyff (Barcelona)

  • 1975: Oleg Blokhin (Dynamo Kyiv)

  • 1976: Franz Beckenbauer (Bayern Munich)

  • 1977: Allan Simonsen (Borussia Monchengladbach)

  • 1978: Kevin Keegan (Hamburg)

  • 1979: Kevin Keegan (Hamburg)

  • 1980: Karl-Heinz Rummenigge (Bayern Munich)

  • 1981: Karl-Heinz Rummenigge (Bayern Munich)

  • 1982: Paolo Rossi (Juventus)

  • 1983: Michel Platini (Juventus)

  • 1984: Michel Platini (Juventus)

  • 1985: Michel Platini (Juventus)

  • 1986: Igor Belanov (Dynamo Kyiv)

  • 1987: Ruud Gullit (AC Milan)

Ruud Gullit before winning the Ballon d'Or in 1987
Photo credit: AP Photo


  • 1988: Marco van Basten (AC Milan)

  • 1989: Marco van Basten (AC Milan)

  • 1990: Lothar Matthaus (Internazionale)

  • 1991: Jean-Pierre Papin (Marseille)

  • 1992: Marco van Basten (AC Milan)

  • 1993: Roberto Baggio (Juventus)

  • 1994: Hristo Stoichkov (Barcelona)

  • 1995: George Weah (AC Milan)

  • 1996: Matthias Sammer (Borussia Dortmund)

  • 1997: Ronaldo (Internazionale)

  • 1998: Zinedine Zidane (Juventus)

  • 1999: Rivaldo (Barcelona)

  • 2000: Luis Figo (Real Madrid)

  • 2001: Michael Owen (Liverpool)

  • 2002: Ronaldo (Real Madrid)

  • 2003: Pavel Nedved (Juventus)

  • 2004: Andriy Shevchenko (AC Milan)

  • 2005: Ronaldinho (Barcelona)

  • 2006: Fabio Cannavaro (Real Madrid)

  • 2007: Kaka (Milan)

  • 2008: Cristiano Ronaldo (Manchester United)

  • 2009: Lionel Messi (Barcelona)

Lionel Messi
Photo credit: Gregorio Borgia / AP Photo


  • 2010: Lionel Messi (Barcelona)

  • 2011: Lionel Messi (Barcelona)

  • 2012: Lionel Messi (Barcelona)

  • 2013: Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid)

  • 2014: Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid)

  • 2015: Lionel Messi (Barcelona)

  • 2016: Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid)

  • 2017: Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid)

  • 2018: Luka Modric (Real Madrid)

  • 2019: Lionel Messi (Barcelona)

*Credit for the main photo belongs to Manu Fernandez / AP Photo*


Alex is a sports betting tipster, specialising in Premier League football, the Champions League and horse racing.

He loves placing a weekly accumulator on the football at the weekend and dreams of landing the big winner that will take him back to Las Vegas.

As well as writing sports betting tips for 888sport since 2015, Alex has produced content for several international media companies, such as and The SPORTBible.