Wednesday, April 17, 2024
HomesoccerMessi wins record-extending 8th Ballon d'Or over Manchester City's Erling Haaland, PSG's...

Messi wins record-extending 8th Ballon d’Or over Manchester City’s Erling Haaland, PSG’s Kylian Mbappé

Lionel Messi has won the men’s Ballon d’Or, soccer’s biggest individual prize, for a record-extending eighth time.

After missing out on the trophy in 2022, Messi, who is widely regarded as the best soccer player ever, reclaimed the title as the current best in the world on Monday, adding to his storied career.

“Tonight I’m enjoying myself. It’s a pleasure that will never leave me, and I hope to be able to enjoy it for many years to come,” Messi said in his acceptance speech through a translator.

Messi won the trophy in 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2015, 2019, 2021, and now 2023.

In other awards, the best under-21 player was Jude Bellingham, an English player on La Liga club Real Madrid, and Haaland won the Gerd Müller award for the best striker of the year. Real Madrid’s Karim Benzema won the Ballon d’Or in 2022.

The Lev Yashin award for best goalkeeper went to Emiliano Martinez, an Argentinian who plays for the Premier League club Aston Villa and the Argentina national team.

The humanitarian prize named after the late Brazil midfielder Socrates went to Vinicius Junior, a Real Madrid player, for his involvement in the foundation he set up for underprivileged children.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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