Real Madrid were showered with more glory, this time in London, where Fifa presented their 'The Best' awards, intended as an alternative to the Ballon d’Or. Fifa are some way from displacing the veteran journalistic award. They initially created their Fifa World Player award, which was with us from 1991 to 2009. Then, as the Ballon d’Or remained the benchmark, they joined forces and tried to leech onto it. That lasted six years until they broke apart. Last year Fifa returned to the individual awards game under a new name, 'The Best'. This competition also changed the dates. It is no longer a prize for the best player over a calendar year, like the Ballon d'Or and other Fifa variants. Now it's the best over a season. And it takes place in October.
Real Madrid, world football's flag bearer
And the winner was, of course, Cristiano, and Zidane picked up the best coach award. Early on in this campaign things are not looking as good in terms of goals for Cristiano and results for Madrid, which means some won’t see the awards so clearly. But we are talking about the 2016/17 season, in which Madrid won LaLiga and the Champions League, plus the Club World Cup and the European Super Cup. That’s from August to August, and not counting the two most recent Super Cups, as I don’t know if they are included. This great achievement was due to Zidane’s level head, Cristiano's goals (his final 'rush' in the Champions League was historic) and the top work of so many others. Madrid, with five players in the ideal team, returns as the flag bearer of world football.
Cristiano Ronaldo vs Lionel Messi
This could also be seen as, Cristiano beats Messi again. For many (I am writing on the way back from Barcelona) this is sacrilege. But this sacrilege is frequently repeated. One can close their eyes and think that they'll never be as goood as Messi. His natural gift is exceptional. But Cristiano has never wanted to give up the battle and with his ambition and goals (not to mention his assists, year after year creating more than Benzema, said without any desire for controversy) is building a new Golden Age for Madrid. Only a man with a will like his could even consider the crazy idea of challenging Messi’s throne.