Lionel Messi won the Ballon d’Or for a record sixth time at the glittering awards ceremony in Paris on Monday night.

The Barcelona star moved ahead of his great rival Cristiano Ronaldo by picking up the prize for the first time since 2015, with Liverpool’s Virgil van Dijk finishing a close second.

Lionel Messi had plenty to smile about on Monday night after winning a record sixth Ballon d’Or

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Lionel Messi had plenty to smile about on Monday night after winning a record sixth Ballon d’Or

The 32-year-old held off the challenge of the Netherlands defender, whose talismanic performances helped Jurgen Klopp’s men clinch a sixth Champions League crown in June.

Messi scored 54 goals for club and country in the 2018/19 season as the Catalan giants won LaLiga, while the Argentine already has 11 goals to his name this season.

Meanwhile, Juventus star Ronaldo made the top three, with Van Dijk’s club team-mates Sadio Mane and Mohamed Salah finishing fourth and fifth respectively.

Judged by a panel of journalists, the Ballon d’Or ran in conjunction with FIFA from 2010 until 2015, when the governing body split to create its own – and much less prestigious – Best Player award.

Messi takes on Ballon d’Or 2019 runner-up Virgil van Dijk at the Camp Nou last season

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Messi takes on Ballon d’Or 2019 runner-up Virgil van Dijk at the Camp Nou last season

But what was the football world like before the likes of Messi and Ronaldo took over? That’s what talkSPORT.com is looking at, stretching back to 2000.

It’s also interesting to see who made it into voters’ lists of the top ten footballers in the world from every year since the turn of the millennium.


Ballon d’Or 2000

1. Luis Figo (Barcelona and Real Madrid)

2. Zinedine Zidane (Juventus)

3. Andriy Shevchenko (AC Milan)

4. Thierry Henry (Arsenal)

5. Alessandro Nesta (Lazio)

6. Rivaldo (Barcelona)

Real Madrid star Luis Figo collects his award in 2000

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Real Madrid star Luis Figo collects his award in 2000

7. Gabriel Batistuta (Roma)

8. Gaizka Mendieta (Valencia)

9. Raul (Real Madrid)

10: Paolo Maldini (AC Milan)

10: David Beckham (Manchester United)

Ballon d’Or 2001

1. Michael Owen (Liverpool)

2. Raul (Real Madrid)

3. Oliver Kahn (Bayern Munich)

4. David Beckham (Manchester United)

5. Francesco Totti (Roma)

6. Luis Figo (Real Madrid)

7. Rivaldo (Barcelona)

8. Andriy Shevchenko (AC Milan)

9. Thierry Henry (Arsenal)

10. Zinedine Zidane (Real Madrid)

Ballon d’Or 2002

1. Ronaldo (Inter Milan and Real Madrid)

2. Roberto Carlos (Real Madrid)

3. Oliver Kahn (Bayern Munich)

4. Zinedine Zidane (Real Madrid)

5. Michael Ballack (Bayer Leverkusen and Bayern Munich)

6. Thierry Henry (Arsenal)

7. Raul (Real Madrid)

8. Rivaldo (Barcelona and AC Milan)

9. Yildiray Basturk (Bayer Leverkusen)

10. Alessandro Del Piero (Juventus)

Ballon d’Or 2003

1. Pavel Nedved (Juventus)

2. Thierry Henry (Arsenal)

3. Paolo Maldini (AC Milan)

4. Andriy Shevchenko (AC Milan)

5. Zinedine Zidane (Real Madrid)

Juventus midfielder Pavel Nedved poses with the prestigious gong

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Juventus midfielder Pavel Nedved poses with the prestigious gong

6. Ruud van Nistelrooy (Manchester United)

7. Raul (Real Madrid)

8. Roberto Carlos (Real Madrid)

9. Gianluigi Buffon (Juventus)

10. David Beckham (Manchester United and Real Madrid)

Ballon d’Or 2004

1. Andriy Shevchenko (AC Milan)

2. Deco (Porto and Barcelona)

3. Ronaldinho (Barcelona)

4. Thierry Henry (Arsenal)

5. Theodoros Zagorakis (AEK Athens and Bologna)

6. Adriano (Parma and Inter Milan)

7. Pavel Naved (Juventus)

8. Wayne Rooney (Everton and Manchester United)

9. Ricardo Carvalho (Porto and Chelsea)

10. Ruud van Nistelrooy (Manchester United)

Ballon d’Or 2005

1. Ronaldinho (Barcelona)

2. Frank Lampard (Chelsea)

3. Steven Gerrard (Liverpool)

4. Thierry Henry (Arsenal)

5. Andriy Shevchenko (AC Milan)

6. Paolo Maldini (AC Milan)

7. Adriano (Inter Milan)

8. Zlatan Ibrahimovic (Juventus)

9. Kaka (AC Milan)

10: Samuel Eto’o (Barcelona)

10: John Terry (Chelsea)

Ballon d’Or 2006

1. Fabio Cannavaro (Juventus and Real Madrid)

2. Gianluigi Buffon (Juventus)

3. Thierry Henry (Arsenal)

4. Ronaldinho (Barcelona)

5. Zinedine Zidane (Real Madrid)

6. Samuel Eto’o (Barcelona)

A moment Fabio Cannavaro will never forget

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A moment Fabio Cannavaro will never forget

7. Miroslav Klose (Werder Bremen)

8. Didier Drogba (Chelsea)

9. Andrea Pirlo (AC Milan)

10. Jens Lehmann (Arsenal)

Ballon d’Or 2007

1. Kaka (AC Milan)

2. Cristiano Ronaldo (Manchester United)

3. Lionel Messi (Barcelona)

4. Didier Drogba (Chelsea)

5. Andrea Pirlo (AC Milan)

6. Ruud van Nistelrooy (Real Madrid)

7. Zlatan Ibrahimovic (Inter Milan)

8. Cesc Fabregas (Arsenal)

9. Robinho (Real Madrid)

10. Francesco Totti (Roma)

Ballon d’Or 2008

1. Cristiano Ronaldo (Manchester United)

2. Lionel Messi (Barcelona)

3. Fernando Torres (Liverpool)

4. Iker Casillas (Real Madrid)

5. Xavi (Barcelona)

6. Andrey Arshavin (Zenit Saint Petersburg)

7. David Villa (Valencia)

8. Kaka (AC Milan)

9. Zlatan Ibrahimovic (Inter Milan)

10. Steven Gerrard (Liverpool)

Ballon d’Or 2009

1. Lionel Messi (Barcelona)

2. Cristiano Ronaldo (Manchester United and Real Madrid)

3. Xavi (Barcelona)

4. Andres Iniesta (Barcelona)

5. Samuel Eto’o (Barcelona)

6. Kaka (AC Milan and Real Madrid)

Lionel Messi with his first Ballon d’Or in 2009

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Lionel Messi with his first Ballon d’Or in 2009

7. Zlatan Ibrahimovic (Inter Milan and Barcelona)

8. Wayne Rooney (Manchester United)

9. Steven Gerrard (Liverpool)

10. Didier Drogba (Chelsea)

Ballon d’Or 2010

1. Lionel Messi (Barcelona)

2. Andres Iniesta (Barcelona)

3. Xavi (Barcelona)

4. Wesley Sneijder (Inter Milan)

5. Diego Forlan (Atletico Madrid)

6. Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid)

7. Iker Casillas (Real Madrid)

8. David Villa (Valencia and Barcelona)

9. Didier Drogba (Chelsea)

10. Xabi Alonso (Liverpool)

Ballon d’Or 2011

1. Lionel Messi (Barcelona)

2. Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid)

3. Xavi (Barcelona)

4. Andres Iniesta (Barcelona)

5. Wayne Rooney (Manchester United)

6. Luis Suarez (Ajax and Liverpool)

7. Diego Forlan (Atletico Madrid and Inter Milan)

8. Samuel Eto’o (Inter Milan and Anzhi Makhachkala)

9. Iker Casillas (Real Madrid)

10. Neymar (Santos)

Ballon d’Or 2012

1. Lionel Messi (Barcelona)

2. Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid)

3. Xavi (Barcelona)

4. Andres Iniesta (Barcelona)

5. Radamel Falcao (Atletico Madrid)

6. Iker Casillas (Real Madrid)

7. Andrea Pirlo (Juventus)

8. Didier Drogba (Chelsea and Atletico Madrid)

9. Robin van Persie (Arsenal and Manchester United)

10. Zlatan Ibrahimovic (AC Milan and Paris Saint-Germain)

Ballon d’Or 2013

1. Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid)

2. Lionel Messi (Barcelona)

3. Franck Ribery (Bayern Munich)

4. Zlatan Ibrahimovic (Paris Saint-Germain)

5. Neymar (Santos and Barcelona)

Cristiano Ronaldo poses with his second Ballon d’Or award of his career

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Cristiano Ronaldo poses with his second Ballon d’Or award of his career

6. Andres Iniesta (Barcelona)

7. Robin van Persie (Manchester United)

8. Arjen Robben (Bayern Munich)

9. Gareth Bale (Tottenham and Real Madrid)

10. Andrea Pirlo (Juventus)

Ballon d’Or 2014

1. Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid)

2. Lionel Messi (Barcelona)

3. Manuel Neuer (Bayern Munich)

4. Arjen Robben (Bayern Munich)

5. Philipp Lahm (Bayern Munich)

6. Thomas Muller (Bayern Munich)

7. Neymar (Barcelona)

8. James Rodriguez (Monaco and Real Madrid)

9. Toni Kroos (Bayern Munich and Real Madrid)

10. Angel di Maria (Real Madrid and Manchester United)

Ballon d’Or 2015

1. Lionel Messi (Barcelona)

2. Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid)

3. Neymar (Barcelona)

4. Robert Lewandowski (Bayern Munich)

5. Paul Pogba (Juventus)

Messi acknowledges the crowd after winning the 2015 award

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Messi acknowledges the crowd after winning the 2015 award

6. Thomas Muller (Bayern Munich)

7. Manuel Neuer (Bayern Munich)

8. Eden Hazard (Chelsea)

9. Andres Iniesta (Barcelona)

10. Alexis Sanchez (Arsenal)

Ballon d’Or 2016

1. Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid)

2. Lionel Messi (Barcelona)

3. Antoine Griezmann (Atletico Madrid)

4. Luis Suarez (Barcelona)

5. Neymar (Barcelona)

6. Gareth Bale (Real Madrid)

7. Riyad Mahrez (Leicester)

8. Jamie Vardy (Leicester)

9: Gianluigi Buffon (Juventus)

9: Pepe (Real Madrid)

Ballon d’Or 2017

1. Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid)

2. Lionel Messi (Barcelona)

3. Neymar (Barcelona and Paris Saint-Germain)

4. Gianluigi Buffon (Juventus)

5. Luka Modric (Real Madrid)

6. Sergio Ramos (Real Madrid)

7. Kylian Mbappe (Monaco and Paris Saint-Germain)

8. N’Golo Kante (Chelsea)

9. Robert Lewandowski (Bayern Munich)

10. Harry Kane (Tottenham)

Ballon d’Or 2018

1. Luka Modric (Real Madrid)

2. Cristiano Ronaldo (Juventus)

3. Antoine Griezmann (Atletico Madrid)

4. Kylian Mbappe (Paris Saint-Germain)

5. Lionel Messi (Barcelona)

Real Madrid and Croatia midfielder Luka Modric claimed the 2018 Ballon d’Or

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Real Madrid and Croatia midfielder Luka Modric claimed the 2018 Ballon d’Or

6. Mohamed Salah (Liverpool)

7. Raphael Varane (Real Madrid)

8. Eden Hazard (Chelsea)

9. Kevin de Bruyne (Manchester City)

10. Harry Kane (Tottenham)

Ballon d’Or 2019

1. Lionel Messi (Barcelona)

2. Virgil van Dijk (Liverpool)

3. Cristiano Ronaldo (Juventus)

4. Sadio Mane (Liverpool)

5. Mohamed Salah (Liverpool)

No player has won the Ballon d’Or more than Messi

No player has won the Ballon d’Or more than Messi

6. Kylian Mbappe (Paris Saint-Germain)

7. Alisson Becker (Liverpool)

8. Robert Lewandowski (Bayern Munich)

9. Bernardo Silva (Manchester City)

10. Riyad Mahrez (Manchester City)

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