It’s almost the most wonderful time of the year again. No, not Christmas, it's almost time for the Balon d’Or ceremonies and for fans that love to argue over who the best player in the world is this is our Christmas.
Below we will give you some Balon d’Or background, the lowdown of what to expect from this year's ceremony and hopefully some good tips and predictions on who will take home the trophy this year.
For those who may have never heard of the Ballon d’Or, it is an award given out every year by France Football (a magazine) to the best men's football player every calendar year. The first award was given out in 1956 and until 1995 the award was only for European footballers. Since then, any professional player in the world can win it and it is considered the most prestigious individual award in the sport.
The importance of the award has grown every year and that growth can probably be attributed to social media. We live in the age of the sport hot take and no other subject is more talked about than the GOAT (greatest of all time) debate. We happen to live in an era when two of the greatest players, Ronaldo and Messi, have coinciding careers. This means social media is full of arguments on the daily about who is actually the greatest.
Of course, there is no better way to back up your argument than pointing to how many Ballon D’or awards a player has. As only Luka Modric has won the award outside of those two in the last 13 years, we can see why it gets so much attention.
So how many Ballon d’Or does Messi have and how many Ballon d’Or does Ronaldo have? Well, Ronaldo has 5 and Messi has a record-breaking 6. So, we can see why Ballon d’Or 2021 could be the one that finally separates the two.
Ballon d’Or betting is similar to outright betting a title winner like the premiership winners. Sometimes it can be hard to find the Ballon d’Or section on some football betting sites. With some, it will be in the outrights or specials section but other times you will have to utilize the search sections to find it. You will be able to find Betfair Ballon d’Or odds below, but you can browse our toplist above for more bookmakers who have odds on this once a year bet on football opportunity.
In regards to what you can bet on unfortunately you’re not going to get a wide variety of markets. Most will just offer the outright winner prices. If you search hard enough you might find some bookmakers that let you bet without a certain player or maybe one will let you bet on where an individual player comes but the majority will just give you the outright winner market.
Find all the players that could be awarded the most prestigious award in football below:
|Nicolo Barella||Inter Milan|
|Karim Benzema||Real Madrid|
|Kevin De Bruyne||Manchester City|
|Cristiano Ronaldo||Manchester United|
|Ruben Dias||Manchester City|
|Gianluigi Donnarumma||Paris Saint-Germain|
|Bruno Fernandes||Manchester United|
|Phil Foden||Manchester City|
|Erling Haaland||Borussia Dortmund|
|Simon Kjaer||AC Milan|
|Robert Lewandowski||Bayern Munich|
|Riyad Mahrez||Manchester City|
|Lautaro Martinez||Inter Milan|
|Kylian Mbappe||Paris Saint-Germain|
|Lionel Messi||Paris Saint-Germain|
|Luka Modric||Real Madrid|
|Raheem Sterling||Manchester City|
|Luis Suarez||Atletico Madrid|
The most important thing to take from this article if you take nothing else is: do NOT bet on anyone outside the top two in the betting. This is either the Messi Ballon d’Or or the Lewandowski Ballon d’Or and don’t let anything else you see or hear tell you any different.
The Ballon d’Or is a narrative-driven award. There is no way Luka Modric was a better player than Messi the year he won. Modric however had dragged Croatia to a World Cup final and voters had Messi and Ronaldo fatigue. Modric has also been a great player for years so it was almost like a lifetime achievement award.
My point is the narrative swings voters. No matter how much you try to block the noise out it is impossible to avoid it. This year there is an incredibly interesting narrative battle.
There was no 2020 Ballon d’Or as due to Corona, French Football thought it would be unfair to give an award. This much more likely has to do with the French league being the only one not to play out the rest of their season after the corona stoppage but that’s a discussion for another time.
Lewandowski would have been the clear Ballon d’Or 2020 winner so the narrative behind him is he deserves one for the unbelievable form he has been in for the past two seasons. The narrative behind Messi is he finally won his first international tournament this year having come out of retirement to help his country win the Copa America. Help is an understatement here as he had the most goals and assists in the tournament.
The betting reflects this as up until recently it looked like it was going to be another Messi Ballon d’Or. Now however it's so close that both they’re Ballon d’Or odds are hovering around evens and some bookmakers have Messi favourite whereas others have Lewandowski taking home the award. In the lead up you will hear stories about how Salah or Jorginiho could win the Ballon d’Or. Ignore any hype around these two, Ballon d’Or 2021 is going to Messi or Lewandowski.
Find a list of all the odds for the Ballon d'Or Nominees 2021:
|Kevin de Bruyne||50/1|
If you want to bet on the Ballon D’or 2021, then these three sites won't steer you wrong:
Not only does William Hill offer great odds for this year's Ballon d’Or but they also have an excellent feature called #yourodds Ballon d’Or. Here you can request, from the William Hill team, some prices for Ballon d’Or futures. For example, currently, on the site, you can bet on Erling Haaland winning the award before the end of 2025.
Odds are changing all the time but at the time of writing Messi has again taken over the favourite role from Lewandowski. Coral still has both at 10/11 currently. It is going to be very hard to find a better price if you fancy Messi to win so if he is your man get to Coral ASAP!
When using Betfair for Ballon d’Or betting we are going to focus on the exchange. With the exchange, we can back a player like normal but also lay players. This means if you really fancy someone is not going to win you lay them. In this case, you are basically the bookmakers and someone takes your bet. The exchange also normally gives you better odds than normal sportsbooks. Just be careful as there is a bit more risk.
Hopefully, now you are well equipped to find your perfect bet for the Ballon d’Or. Remember the main advice is do not look at anyone outside of Lewandowski and Messi. If you are confident in one of these but feel what you are reading and hearing more about the other maybe bide your time before a bet. The award ceremony is on the 29th of November and the prices will fluctuate a lot before then so pick your moment carefully.
The below list contains all Previous Ballon d'or Winners -
DISCLAIMER: brace yourself for the ultimate list of footballing greats!
|2018||Luka Modric||Croatia||Real Madrid|
|2017||Cristianio Ronaldo||Portugal||Real Madrid|
|2016||Cristianio Ronaldo||Portugal||Real Madrid|
|2014||Cristianio Ronaldo||Portugal||Real Madrid|
|2013||Cristianio Ronaldo||Portugal||Real Madrid|
|2008||Cristianio Ronaldo||Portugal||Manchester United|
|2006||Fabio Cannavaro||Italy||Real Madrid|
|2003||Pavel Nedvěd||Czech Republic||Juventus|
|2000||Luís Figo||Portugal||Real Madrid|
|1996||Matthias Sammer||Germany||Borussia Dortmund|
|1992||Marco van Basten||Netherlands||Milan|
|1989||Marco van Basten||Netherlands||Milan|
|1988||Marco van Basten||Netherlands||Milan|
|1986||Igor Belanov||Soviet Union||Dynamo Kyiv|
|1981||Karl-Heinz Rummenigge||West Germany||Bayern Munich|
|1980||Karl-Heinz Rummenigge||West Germany||Bayern Munich|
|1977||Allan Simonsen||Denmark||Borussia M”nchengladbach|
|1976||Franz Beckenbauer||West Germany||Bayern Munich|
|1975||Oleg Blokhin||Soviet Union||Dynamo Kyiv|
|1972||Franz Beckenbauer||West Germany||Bayern Munich|
|1970||Gerd Müller||West Germany||Bayern Munich|
|1968||George Best||Northern Ireland||Manchester United|
|1967||Flórián Albert||Hungary||Ferencv rosi TC|
|1966||Bobby Charlton||England||Manchester United|
|1964||Denis Law||Scotland||Manchester United|
|1963||Lev Yashin||Soviet Union||Dynamo Moscow|
|1962||Josef Masopust||Czechoslovakia||Dukla Prague|
|1959||Alfredo Di Stéfano||Spain||Real Madrid|
|1958||Raymond Kopa||France||Real Madrid|
|1957||Alfredo Di Stéfano||Spain||Real Madrid|