Neymar, Dani Alves Upset Cristiano Ronaldo Beat Brazilian in 2015 Ballon d'Or

Rory MarsdenFeatured ColumnistJanuary 12, 2016

TOPSHOT - (From L) FC Barcelona and Brazils forward Neymar, FC Barcelona and Argentina's forward Lionel Messi and Real Madrid and Portugal's forward Cristiano Ronaldo pose after a press conference ahead of the 2015 FIFA Ballon d'Or award ceremony at the Kongresshaus in Zurich on January 11, 2016. AFP PHOTO / OLIVIER MORIN / AFP / OLIVIER MORIN        (Photo credit should read OLIVIER MORIN/AFP/Getty Images)
OLIVIER MORIN/Getty Images

Neymar has admitted his frustration at finishing third behind Real Madrid's Cristiano Ronaldo in the Ballon d'Or voting, while his Barcelona and Brazil team-mate, Dani Alves, was similarly annoyed with the result.

Lionel Messi deservedly won his third Ballon d'Or on Monday, but Ronaldo took second, beating Neymar by some distance despite the 23-year-old's huge contribution to Barca's phenomenal success in 2015, per BBC Sport:

While Ronaldo had another stellar year individually, Real won no significant silverware—unlike Barca's five-trophy haul—and Neymar was unsurprisingly perturbed to see himself ranked so far behind the Portuguese in the voting, per Spanish outlet Marca:

"In all honesty, yes, I'd hoped to come second. But I'm over it now. It's another season and it's time to do things well all over again. Now I have to work a little bit more to be among the three finalists again."

Neymar was a key part of the Blaugrana's treble win last season—he netted in the Copa del Rey and Champions League final victories and scored 22 goals in La Liga, per Squawka—and was the star man at the beginning of the current campaign when Messi was sidelined through injury.

As far as Alves is concerned, his compatriot was the obvious choice for second place behind the Argentinian superstar, per Spanish outlet Sport:

"Nothing surprises me any more in the football world, but I don't agree with the difference [in votes] between Ney and Cristiano. If Leo didn't win it, it had to be Ney. But he will win it one day. He has a lot of potential and quality. He wants it and he will fight a lot to achieve it. He always fights for his dreams."

As noted by Alves, Neymar is sure to win the Ballon d'Or one day, as he is still maturing as a player and likely to get even better in the coming years.

Bleacher Report's Dean Jones believes that the former Santos man will be back on the shortlist next year with Messi, but without Ronaldo:

With Barcelona looking set to compete again this season for the Champions League, La Liga and the Copa del Rey, there will be many opportunities for Neymar to prove his worth and impress next year's voters.

He was arguably hard done by to finish behind Ronaldo in 2015, but he has a long way left to go in his career and will surely be a regular fixture in the Ballon d'Or conversation for many years to come.