Let us get a critical premise out the way: Lionel Messi, the man of every superlative, is the best footballer alive. Such is my opinion, but more credibly, numerous esteemed managers, players and former players think so as well. Over the years he has been pitted against pseudo-archenemy Cristiano Ronaldo, himself a phenomenal, historic footballer worthy of all praise. But the debate can be quieted rather simply. Messi is discussed, by several already anointed, as perhaps the best in the history of the sport; Ronaldo is not.
The topic here is not deciphering whether Messi is better than Ronaldo. He is. Rather, what follows is a continuation of the uncertain criteria and period of consideration that plagues the FIFA Ballon d’Or (BDO). Just because Messi is and, quite likely, will continue to be this planet’s superior footballer until his playing days reach their twilight, it does not entitle him annual BDOs. As concluded in The Mig Toc’s opening post, The Ballon d’Or Debacle, the BDO should fundamentally reward individual performance excellence which is integral to team success. Messi is the only winner of the recently (2010) merged FIFA BDO, much to the chagrin of chiefly you-know-who. So let’s ask: Does Cristiano Ronaldo have beef?
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