Karim Benzema was finally able to lay his hands on the prestigious Ballon d’Or, which had been an exclusive territory of Messi and Ronaldo for the last few years, on October 17. Thus, the French footballer became the second oldest player to win the coveted trophy since Stanley Matthews (41) in 1956. Though Benzema thoroughly deserved the award there were some players whose ranking in the Ballon d’Or and their current performances lacked cohesion. So, let us get down to the players who were unfairly ranked in this year’s prestigious event.
Vinicius Junior (Real Madrid)
It must be very disheartening for many to find Vinicius Junior being ranked so low considering his much-improved performance in Europe’s top leagues last fall. Apart from scoring the match-winning goal against Liverpool in the Champions League Final last season, he found the net four times and provided 7 assists in 13 outings in the continental events. He forged a deadly alliance with Benzema and broke the strongest of defences with ease, yet his ranking this year comes across as shocking.
Robert Lewandowski (Barcelona)
At fourth, the Pole is not ranked too low but considering his exploits last season he certainly deserved to be in the top three. Lewandowski, with Barcelona currently, had a stupendous time with Bayern Munich in the previous season. In Bundesliga games, he netted 35 times and was responsible for four assists, and his final goal tally was the best for a forward not only in Germany but in Europe as well. So, winning the Gerd Muller Striker of the year award was hardly a consolation as he looked capable of more.
Thibaut Courtois (Real Madrid)
It was definitely disappointing to see the Real goalkeeper in the seventh spot of this year’s Ballon d’Or, taking into account some breathtaking saves last season. Though he won Yashin Trophy for the best goalkeeper last season, his final standing in the 30-man rankings was baffling, to say the least. In the CL final game against Liverpool, which the Real won 1-0, Courtois effected nine saves, and on top of this, he made 56 saves in the entire league season as well. Hence, his final ranking does not justify his incredible performance so far.