Ballon d'Or 2019 Winner: Voting Results, Reaction to Lionel Messi's Victory

Gill Clark@@gillclarkyFeatured Columnist IIDecember 2, 2019

Barcelona's Argentinian forward Lionel Messi arrives to attend the Ballon d'Or France Football 2019 ceremony at the Chatelet Theatre in Paris on December 2, 2019. (Photo by FRANCK FIFE / AFP) (Photo by FRANCK FIFE/AFP via Getty Images)
FRANCK FIFE/Getty Images

Barcelona captain Lionel Messi was awarded the 2019 Ballon d'Or on Monday in Paris, picking up the prestigious Golden Ball trophy for a record sixth time:

The Argentina international beat Liverpool defender Virgil van Dijk, Reds forward Sadio Mane and Cristiano Ronaldo to be crowned the world's best player yet again. 

Messi netted 54 goals for club and country in 2018-19, picking up his 10th La Liga title along the way and was also voted Best FIFA Men's Player in September. 

Messi's win sees him out on his own when it comes to Ballon d'Or wins. He has one more than Ronaldo and three more than Johan Cruyff, Michel Platini and Marco van Basten:

BBC's Match of the Day summarised his career statistics:

The Barcelona captain was presented with the award by 2018 winner and Real Madrid midfielder Luka Modric:

Van Dijk finished second after helping Liverpool to win the 2018 UEFA Champions League and guiding the Netherlands to UEFA Euro 2020 as captain.

Ronaldo came in third following another successful year for the Portugal international. He joined Juventus from Real Madrid in summer 2018 and went on to win Serie A in his first season in Italy, while Liverpool's Mane finished fourth after a prolific campaign for the Reds:

Messi's last Ballon d'Or win came back in 2015. He finished fifth in 2018 which attracted criticism and saw Barcelona manager Ernesto Valverde brand the decision "absurd," per BBC Sport.

The Argentina international is widely regarded as the best player in the world and is arguably the greatest player of all time.

He missed the start of the 2018-19 season through injury but has returned to action in style, scoring 13 goals and contributing eight assists for his club in 16 appearances. 

Messi scored a brilliant winner on Sunday to secure a 1-0 win over Atletico Madrid at the Wanda Metropolitano and hit another landmark in his glittering career:

Van Dijk offered his thoughts on Messi's win after the announcement, per the Guardian's John Brewin.

"I had a great season, but sometimes you come up against players like him [Messi], who are a bit unnatural," he said. "Six Ballon d'Ors, you gotta respect greatness."

Messi was the top scorer in La Liga and the Champions League in 2018-19, and his 36 league goals saw him claim the European Golden Shoe for the sixth time in his career.

He celebrated his 32nd birthday in June but has shown no signs of slowing down as he approaches the end of his career and remains as vital as ever to Barcelona's hopes of success.

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