Focus on: 2013 FIFA Ballon d’Or
Last Monday in Zurich, the 2013 FIFA Ballon d’Or Gala took place, and several prizes, related to 2013, have been awarded.
As expected, the Portoguese winger of Real Madrid, Cristiano Ronaldo, was nominated best player of 2013, winning the Ballon d’Or, probably not only because of what he did in 2013 – he won no titles with the Spanish team - but also because of what he had done in the previous years, when his star had been obscured, you have to decide by yourselves if that had been right or wrong, by his rival Leo Messi, who ended this Edition in the second place, because of several injuries that affected his performances. Moreover, this time, the Argentinian couldn’t count on the victory of UEFA Champions League, that probably helped Frank Ribery to end third, even if the Frenchman hoped to win the trophy.
This is the second Ballon d’Or for Cristiano Ronaldo, who was very moved when he received the trophy, after the one he had won in 2008, but the first one after 2009, when the two main football award, the Ballon d’Or, awarded by France Football after the votes of some sport journalist, and FIFA World Player, awarded by FIFA after the votes of captains and managers of each National Team, merged into one single award, that kept the famous name and trophy created by France Football, but is officially awarded by FIFA, after a vote involving a journalist, the NT manager and the NT captain from each Federation member of the highest body of football.
The Portoguese has been amazingly continuous for several years, and is a very complete player, he has fantasy and class, he’s fast and has a good physic, can play both on the sides and in the penalty area, can use the head very well, and, most of all, he scores several goals; moreover he probably can adapt himself quite well to different championships, competitions and styles of play. His performances in the Play-off of the Word Cup Qualifiers against Sweden ended any discussion about who would have won the prestigious award.
Only 5 different footballes have gained 1 of the 12 places (3 places x 4 years) on the podium since 2009: Leo Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo, Xavi, Andres Iniesta and the new entry of this Season, Frank Ribery.
After conquering Champions League, Bundesliga and DFB Pokal with FC Bayern Munchen, the German Jupp Heynckes, more than deservedly, has been chosen as World Coach of the Year for Men’s Football, defeating his fellow Jurgen Klopp (Borussia Dortmund) and the legendary Sir Alex Ferguson, who has just retired after 27 years in charge of Manchester United.
About women football, the German Nadine Angerer, GK and captain of German National Team, winner of 2013 European Championship, who played for FFC Frankfurt and Brisbane Roar (Australia) in 2013, and has just been bought by Portland Thornes (USA), was named Women’s World Player of the Year, while her fellow Silvia Neid, manager of German National Team, was chosen as World Coach of the Year for Women’s Football.
The winner of World Coach of the Year for Men’s Football has been decided by the same voters and system as that of the men’s player award, while the winners of the Awards about women’s football have been chosen by experts from FIFA and France Football.
Leo Messi’s fashion choices have been questionable again: last year he wore a spotted suit, while during this edition he chose to wear a red one, probably to match the blue dress that his wife was wearing, maybe to form together the colours of FC Barcellona.
Ballon d’Or: 1 Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid CF) – 2 Leo Messi (FC Barcellona) – 3 Frank Ribery (FC Bayern Municen)
Women’s World Player of the Year: Nadine Angerer (1. FFC Frankfurt/Brisbane Roar)
World Coach of the Year for Men’s Football: Jupp Heynckes (FC Bayern Municen)
World Coach of the Year for Women’s Football: Silvia Neid (Germany)
A best lineup was chosen as well:
Manuel Neur (BAY)
Philipp Lahm (BAY), Sergio Ramos (RM), Thiago Silva (PSG), Diego Alves (BAR)
Franck Ribery (BAY), Xavi (BAR), Andres Iniesta (BAR)
Cristiano Ronaldo (RM), Zlatan Ibrahimovic (PSG), Leo Messi (BAR)
You can note that the gap between few giant European teams and the other ones is increasing more and more, infact all the players come from just four teams: FC Barcellona (4), FC Bayern Monaco (4), Real Madrid CF (2) and Paris Saint-Germain (2).
Few other “minor” prizes were awarded: Zlatan Ibrahimovic won the Puskas Award for the beast goal of the year, that had been voted on internet, Pelè won a FIFA Ballon d’or Prix d’Honneur, the Afghanistan Football Federation won a FIFA Fair Play Award, probably because last year Afghanistan faced Pakistan in Kaboul in the first home match in several years, and finally Jacques Rogge, the Honorary President of IOC, who ended his Presidency last December after 12 years, won the FIFA Presidential Award.
FIFA Puskás Award: Zlatan Ibrahimović
FIFA Presidential Award: Jacques Rogge
FIFA Fair Play Award: Afghanistan Football Federation
FIFA Ballon d’Or Prix d’Honneur: Pelé