Lionel Messi might be 32 years of age but he is still going strong. Even though it is apparent that he is not as quick as before, he has adapted his game to such a level that a few moments of his magic are enough to do the damage.
The Argentine failed to win the Champions League in the 2018/19 season and yet, he won FIFA's The Best Men’s Player award over European champions Virgil van Dijk and Sadio Mane.
With that in mind, here are three reasons why he could trump them again for the Ballon d’Or:
3. Superb Start to the Season
As mentioned earlier, Lionel Messi is still going strong and perhaps just as good as ever. He might have missed some games due to a niggling injury but even then he is right up there with Karim Benzema for the Pichichi award.
He has played seven matches in the league so far this season and has scored eight times while assisting four times. On top of that, he finished last season with 51 goals from 50 games, which alone make him worthy of the award.
2. Winning the League Title Consistently Matters
Contrary to popular belief, the league title plays a role in deciding a player’s fortunes in the Ballon d’Or. In 2013, Cristiano Ronaldo failed to win both the league and the Champions League and yet, he won the Ballon d’Or because his numbers were far superior to his nearest rival that year, Franck Ribery.
The case is almost similar this year as both Sadio Mane and Virgil van Dijk, individually, are a bit behind the Argentine. On top of that, he helped Barcelona to a comfortable league win in a season where the Catalan giants often looked clueless without him.
1. Momentum Is With Him
Last year, Luka Modric won FIFA's The Best Men’s Player award and then won the Ballon d’Or a few months later. The same thing happened twice with Cristiano Ronaldo – once in 2016 and the next time was in the following year in 2017.
In short, for the last three years, the player that won The Best Men’s Player award went on to win the Ballon d’Or. This year, Lionel Messi has already been awarded by FIFA as the best player of the year.
As a result, going simply by the pattern, Messi is all set to win the Ballon d’Or.
With the Ballon d'Or gala closing in, here are three reasons why Lionel Messi could win the award for a record sixth time...