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FIFA Ballon d'Or

In a nutshell:

The Ballon d'Or was Europe's most prestigious award, created back in 1956 by France Football magazine. In 2010 it was merged with FIFA's World Player of the Year Award and re-badged as the FIFA Ballon d'Or award.

Awarded to:

As the original Ballon d'Or it was originally open only to footballers of European nationality, and then opened up to anyone playing for a European club. But now it's open to any footballer, of any nationality, in any league.

Voted by:

The award is voted for by football journalists, international coaches and international captains.

When:

Annually, in December.

Worth a mention:

1. There's a female award too. And one for coaches.

The FIFA Ballon d'Or Winners

Year Winner Runner-up Third
2016 Cristiano Ronaldo (POR) Real Madrid Lionel Messi (ARG) Barcelona Antoine Griezmann (FRA) Atletico Madrid
2015 Lionel Messi (ARG) Barcelona Cristiano Ronaldo (POR) Real Madrid Neymar (BRA) Barcelona
2014 Cristiano Ronaldo (POR) Real Madrid Lionel Messi (ARG) Barcelona Manuel Neuer (GER) Bayern Munich
2013 Cristiano Ronaldo (POR) Real Madrid Lionel Messi (ARG) Barcelona Franck Ribery (FRA) Bayern Munich
2012 Lionel Messi (ARG) Barcelona Cristiano Ronaldo (POR) Real Madrid Andres Iniesta (SPA) Barcelona
2011 Lionel Messi (ARG) Barcelona Cristiano Ronaldo (POR) Real Madrid Xavi (SPA) Barcelona
2010 Lionel Messi (ARG) Barcelona Andres Iniesta (SPA) Barcelona Xavi (SPA) Barcelona

The Ballon d'Or Winners before FIFA got involved...