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Lionel Messi wins the Ballon d’Or, beating the new generation of soccer players

Ava Stone
In the world of competitive football (American soccer), Lionel Messi still reigns as one of the best players.

Soccer star Lionel Messi won his eighth Ballon d’Or last week, beating out multiple young superstars like Erling Haaland, Kylian Mbappé, and Vinicius Jr. After 19 years of playing among some of the greatest players of all time, the Inter Miami CF player now has another Ballon d’Or to add to his collection, along with some of the most prestigious titles and honorary awards in soccer.

On Oct. 30, the 67th annual Ballon d’Or Awards ceremony, presented by France Football Magazine, was held in the Théâtre du Châtelet in Paris. 

The Ballon d’Or is a highly distinguished and grandiose trophy presented to the best soccer player of that year. 

The winners are chosen by the editorial team of the France Football magazine, which asks the top 100 countries from the FIFA Mens’ World Ranking for the top 5 players that they believe should win the award. They count up the votes from those lists and determine the winner based on the players’ number of votes.

All the winners of the Ballon d’Or have all been playing in Europe in the year they won, until now. Messi, who started playing with Inter Miami CF in the summer, is now the first MLS-based player to win the Ballon d’Or. This had many fans speculating and asking whether or not the league that the winner is in plays an important role in the people’s decision.

“[The Ballon d’Or winner] should have to be playing in Europe,” junior Shaurya Jain said.

Playing professional soccer is difficult and the level of competitiveness is high, whether you play in or outside of Europe. But since Europe is where all the big leagues are, many people were surprised when Messi was awarded the Ballon d’Or. 

“Haaland should have won because he broke the scoring record in his debut season and won the treble, “ Jain said.

This past year, Erling Haaland had 56 goals and 9 assists, helping Manchester City win the treble: Champions League, Premier League, and the FA Cup. Meanwhile, Messi had 46 goals and 26 assists, winning the 2022 World Cup with Argentina. He also helped Inter Miami CF win the Leagues Cup and PSG win the Trophee des Champions and Ligue 1. 

In the past, the winner’s performance over the years was also taken into account, which is why Messi was able to win over the Polish striker Robert Lewandowski in the 2021 Ballon d’Or awards. But since the 2021/2022 awards, the parameters have been changed, creating more opportunities for players worldwide.

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About the Contributors
Carlos Sanchez
Carlos is a junior at Metea and this is his first year on staff as a sports reporter. He enjoys playing soccer and listening to music, specifically jazz or R&B songs. He is also pretty good at thrifting.
Ava Stone
Ava Stone is a senior on the graphics team, and this is her second year as a member of the Stampede and she hopes to expand her roles into photography and writing as well as graphics. Some of her hobbies include graphic design, photography, reading, writing, and hanging out with friends. She also enjoys making money at her two jobs: Jojo's Shake Bar and Naperville Yard. After she graduates she hopes to go to college to study psychology. 

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  • B

    Bob BrownNov 13, 2023 at 1:08 pm

    Carlos Sanchez, I like the articles you are writing and would like if you could write more – Bob Brown

  • B

    Bob BarleyNov 13, 2023 at 12:59 pm

    Good stuff man 🙂