The 2021 Ballon d’Or winner will be announced on Paris tomorrow night on the 29th of November, so our writers have attempted to pick a winner.
See below for who each of us feels would be the deserving winner of this year’s illustrious prize…
Mark Brus – Mohamed Salah
I’m not saying he’s likely to win it, but in my heart of hearts Mohamed Salah feels like the deserving Ballon d’Or winner for 2021.
There are very good cases for Lionel Messi and Robert Lewandowski as well, and I suspect it will be one of those two, but Salah has taken his game to another level, from what was already an outstandingly good level.
Mohamed Salah has been close to unplayable for much of the season
While there’s a case for Messi due to his Copa America success, the Argentine is no longer at his peak and has been pretty underwhelming at Paris Saint-Germain so far, with just four goals in nine games so far. Salah, meanwhile, has 17 in 18 matches for Liverpool in all competitions, many of them at Messi-esque quality, none more so than his stunning solo effort against Manchester City that is sure to go down as one of the best of the Premier League era.
Of course it’s not just about goals or Lewandowski would be the clear winner. As great a finisher as the Poland international is, he doesn’t personally get me off my seat like Salah in full flow. The Egyptian can humiliate the best defenders with his pace and skill, he can pick out an assist with his excellent vision and unselfishness, and he can score from basically nothing in a way not really seen in English football since the legendary Thierry Henry graced these shores.
Counting against Salah will be his lack of silverware this year, but if the Ballon d’Or is truly a recognition of the best all-round footballer of the moment, you can’t look beyond the Liverpool talisman.
Jason Pettigrove – Lionel Messi
How can anyone look beyond Lionel Messi for this year’s Ballon d’Or award?
The Argentinian maestro has defied the odds yet again, but we have to get away from this ‘give it to anyone but Messi’ narrative.
The best player should win the award rather than having tactical voting decide, and frankly, no one has come…