News Matches
Ballon d'Or

Who has won the most Ballons d'Or?

22:30 GMT 29/11/2021
Lionel Messi Ballon d'Or 2019
Lionel Messi was crowned the best player of the year for the seventh time, but how does he compare to the previous winners?

The winner of the 2021 Ballon d’Or award has been announced.

Once again, Lionel Messi has been crowned the best player in world football over the last year.

It is the seventh time the Argentina hero has been given the accolade in his career. GOAL examines where everyone stacks up behind his record tally.

Which player has won the most Ballons d’Or?

Messi is the most decorated player in the history of the Ballon d’Or award.

A total of 10 players have claimed the trophy more than once and Messi is at the top of the chart with his seven.

Cristiano Ronaldo is behind him in second, having won it five times.

Player

No. of Ballon d'Or wins

Lionel Messi

7

Cristiano Ronaldo

5

Johan Cruyff

3

Marco van Basten

3

Michel Platini

3

Franz Beckenbauer

2

Ronaldo

2

Alfredo Di Stefano

2

Kevin Keegan

2

Karl Heinz-Rummenigge

2

How many Ballons d’Or has Lionel Messi won?

After finishing second behind Ronaldo in the rankings in 2008, Messi picked up his first Ballon d’Or one year later.

It was the first of four in a row the then-Barcelona star would claim as his rivalry with the Portuguese attacker dominated elite football.

He lost out to Ronaldo in 2013 and 2014 before being named No.1 again the following year. He had to wait until 2015 for his fifth award, then the sixth came along in 2019.

He's now padded his tally in 2021, moving up to seven in his career.

Year

Player

Club

2021

Messi

Barcelona/PSG

2019

Messi

Barcelona

2015

Messi

Barcelona

2012

Messi

Barcelona

2011

Messi

Barcelona

2010

Messi

Barcelona

2009

Messi

Barcelona

How many Ballons d’Or has Cristiano Ronaldo won?

Ronaldo made the top three for the first time in 2007, but came in second behind AC Milan icon Kaka that year.

Twelve months later, Ronaldo’s dream became a reality as he was crowned for the first time, but it would be several years of near misses before he would claim his second award.

He then went on to win the 2014, 2016 and 2017 awards as his battle with Messi continued.

This year was his first outside the top three places since 2010.

Year

Player

Club

2017

Ronaldo

Real Madrid

2016

Ronaldo

Real Madrid

2014

Ronaldo

Real Madrid

2013

Ronaldo

Real Madrid

2008

Ronaldo

Manchester United

How many Ballons d’Or has Pele won?

Brazil phenomenon Pele was never given the Ballon d’Or because of a rule preventing non-European players from winning it until that policy was overturned in 1995.

But France Football revealed that the three-time World Cup winner would have seven titles to his name had he been eligible, which would have made him the record holder until Messi matched him this year.

Below are the years the Ballon d'Or publication says Pele would have won:

Year

Player

Club

1970

Pele

Santos

1964

Pele

Santos

1963

Pele

Santos

1961

Pele

Santos

1960

Pele

Santos

1959

Pele

Santos

1958

Pele

Santos