Lionel Messi wins unprecedented fifth Ballon d’Or award
Lionel Messi has won the 2015 FIFA Ballon d’Or award, scooping the best player in the world accolade for a record fifth time.
Messi earned 41.33 per cent of the votes, ahead of Cristiano Ronaldo with 27.76 per cent and Neymar with 7.86 per cent.
“This is a very special moment for me to be back here on this stage again winning another Ballon d’Or,” Messi said upon receiving the award.
“It’s incredible that it’s my fifth and is much more than anything I could have dreamed of as a kid. I want to thank all those who voted for me first of all. I also want to thank my team-mates, as I always say none of this would ever have been possible without them.
“And lastly, I want to thank football in general for everything it has brought me, both the bad and the good, because it has made me grow and learn always.”
Messi won the best player in the world award for four consecutive years from 2009 to 2012 before being pipped to the title by Ronaldo in 2013 and 2014.
The Argentinian had another stellar year in 2015 where he scored 53 goals in 56 appearances in all competitions for Barcelona. He also inspired Argentina to the Copa America final, where they were beaten by Chile on penalties.
FIFA FIFPro World XI: Manuel Neuer (Bayern Munich); Thiago Silva (PSG), Marcelo (Real Madrid), Sergio Ramos, (Real Madrid), Dani Alves (Barcelona); Andres Iniesta (Barcelona), Luka Modric (Real Madrid), Paul Pogba (Juventus); Neymar (Barcelona), Lionel Messi (Barcelona), Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid).
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