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Ballon d’Or 2022: Benzema wins, awards, winners and latest updates from the ceremony

Ballon d’Or 2022: Benzema wins, awards, winners and latest updates from the ceremony

Ballon d'Or gala 2022: as it happened

The complete list of winners from the 66th Ballon d'Or ceremony

Ballon d'Or: Karim Benzema (France, Real Madrid)
Women's Ballon d'Or: Alexia Putellas (Spain, FC Barcelona)
Yashin Trophy: Thibaut Courtois (Belgium, Real Madrid)
Kopa Trophy: Gavi (Spain, FC Barcelona)
Gerd Müller award: Robert Lewandowski (Poland, Bayern Munich/FC Barcelona)
Socrates Prize: Sadio Mané (Senegal, Liverpool/Bayern Munich)
Club of the Year: Manchester City (England)

Paul Reidy

We'll close off our live coverage from Paris for the night. A night where there were few surprises with pre-ceremony favorites Karim Benzema and Alexia Putellas winning the 2022 Ballon d'Or awards.

Thanks for joining us and roll on the 67th edition of the awards in 2023. 

Paul Reidy

Spanish domination since 2008

LaLiga's domination in the Ballon d'Or is complete with journalist Andy Mitten pointing out that no player playing outside the Spanish top flight has won the Ballon d'Or since Cristiano Ronaldo at Manchester United in 2008.


Irony 'on' for Kroos as he congratulates 3rd best team

Real Madrid midfielder congratulated Benzema and Courtis after their respective award wins and claimed that it was a decent feat for the 'third best team in the world' after that particular award went to Premier League giants Manchester City.

 Karim Benzema

Karim Benzema / Mohammed Badra / EFE

Benzema philosophical after win

Benzema was eloquent in his award acceptance speech and has his sights very much fixed on next month's World Cup.

The striker will now be hoping to win his first piece of major silverware with France at the World Cup in Qatar, having missed out on the 2018 tournament, which they won in Russia.

"My goal is to continue to enjoy playing football, to score and make my team mates score. The World Cup is the next challenge," he said ahead of the finals starting on Nov. 20.

Although Benzema has had a complicated history with France and coach Didier Deschamps, he insisted his Ballon d'Or triumph did not prove anything.

"Revenge doesn't help you grow," he said. "I don't want to dwell on my failures. They just give me more mental strength. I have no regrets. What happened, happened, but what matters is what is happening today."

Paul Reidy

When an image speaks louder than words

Alexia with her second Ballon d'Or Feminin.


Busy night for FCB social media admin

Barcelona were the big winners at Monday night's Ballon d'Or ceremony with three of the seven awards going to Barça players with Robert Lewandowski winning the top scorer Gerd Muller Award (albeit for his work at former club Bayern Munich), Gavi won the Kopa Award for best U-21 player and despite being ruled out with a long term injury, there was good news for Alexia Putellas as she won her second Ballon d'Or Feminin.

Real Madrid's Karim Benzema


Benzema hails 'peoples award'

Speaking after being presented with the 2022 Ballon d'Or, the French striker said: "Seeing this award in front of me makes me really proud of the work I have done. It was childhood dream, to have the motivation... I had two role models, Zidane and Ronaldo [the Brazil legend], and always I had this dream in my mind that anything is possible.

"There was a difficult period where I wasn't in the French team, but I never stopped working hard or gave up.

"Really proud of my journey here. It wasn't easy, it was difficult. To be here today for the first time, I am happy, pleased for my work and want to keep going.

"I want to thank all my team-mates at Real Madrid and France and my coach and the Real Madrid president, who is here this evening, and also the support of Jean-Michel Aulas [Lyon president].

"There are a lot of people to thank. It is an individual prize but still a collective one because of everyone who played a role in it."

William AllenPaul Reidy

Why did Mané win the Socrates award?

Senegal's Sadio Mané was awarded with the first 'Socrates Award' that highlights footballers committed to social and charitable causes, at the Ballon d'Or gala held in Paris.

The current Bayern Munich and Senegalese national team striker was awarded for his commitment to the development of his hometown Bambali, in the south of the African country, where, among other projects, he promotes the practice of soccer among both boys and girls.

The 30-year-old footballer also financed the construction of a hospital and promised, after a charity match played this year, to pay for the creation of an artificial turf soccer pitch.


French President Macron hails Benzema

The French President Emmanuel Macron used his personal Twitter account to pay tribute to the 2022 Ballon d'Or winner Karim Benzema with a simple but effective tweet with KB9 and the French flag.


Alexia shows off her award

The FC Barcelona Femeni striker posed with here award after the France Football Ballon d'Or ceremony at the Theatre du Chatelet in the French capital.


A heavy LaLiga accent on the awards tonight with five of the seven prizes going to players competing in the Spanish top flights with FC Barcelona and Real Madrid dominating.

William AllenPaul Reidy

The complete list of winners from the 66th Ballon d'Or ceremony

Ballon d'Or: Karim Benzema (France, Real Madrid)
Women's Ballon d'Or: Alexia Putellas (Spain, FC Barcelona)
Yashin Trophy: Thibaut Courtois (Belgium, Real Madrid)
Kopa Trophy: Gavi (Spain, FC Barcelona)
Gerd Müller award: Robert Lewandowski (Poland, Bayern Munich/FC Barcelona)
Socrates Prize: Sadio Mané (Senegal, Liverpool/Bayern Munich)
Club of the Year: Manchester City (England)

William AllenPaul Reidy

Ballon d'Or 2022: full mens list

Top 10

1 Karim Benzema (Real Madrid, France)
2 Sadio Mané (Liverpool/Bayern Munich, Senegal)
3 Kevin De Bruyne (Manchester City, Belgium)
4 Robert Lewandowski (Bayern/ FC Barcelona, Poland)
5 Mohamed Salah (Liverpool, Egypt) 
6 Kylian Mbappé (PSG, France)
7 Thibaut Courtois (Real Madrid, Belgium)
8 Vinícius Júnior (Real Madrid, Brazil)
9 Luka Modric (Real Madrid, Croatia)
10 Erling Haaland (Borussia Dortmund/Man City, Norway)


William AllenPaul Reidy

Benzema becomes fifth French player to lift Ballon d'Or

The Real Madrid striker joins an elite group of French Ballon d'Or winners.

Kopa - Papin - Platini - Zidane and now Benzema


2022 Ballon d'Or podium

1) Karim Benzema: Real Madrid and France

2) Sadio Mane: Liverpool-Bayern and Senegal

3) Kevin de Bruyne: Belgium and Man City


The official ceremony may be over but we're not going anywhere. We'll be here through the night with all the reaction to the event, Benzema's win and look at the other six awards.

Later on we should have the voting of the media partners who were on the committee and see how they voted.  Stay with us....

William AllenPaul Reidy

Benzema speaking in Spanish now and pays tribute to 'O Fenomeno' Ronaldo who beams in pride. Benzema seems extremely popular amongst his peers as Benzema, family and Zidane pose for the pictures that will adorn social media feeds tonight and tomorrow ....

and with that, the presentes bid farewell to the audience and invite is to tune in again next year for the 2023, the 67th Ballon d'Or awards ceremony,

William AllenPaul Reidy

Benzema is holding things together well in recalling key figures from his life who inspired him. He singles out his mother and she joins her son on stage. 
Mother and son embrace in a poignant moment. Benzema's son (who looks about 6 years old) now takes to the stage too and the litle lad looks visibly overwhelmed by the scene. 

William AllenPaul Reidy

Benzema Ballon d'Or

A look back at the French striker's career with goal after goal. 50 goals last season, LaLiga winner and Champions League winners medal in the 2022 UCL final in Paris.


The striker pays tribute to his family and reflects on his formative years at Olympique Lyon and pays thanks to Real Madrid president Florentino Perez

He cuts his speech just as it seems to be overcome by the motion of the occasion. 

William AllenPaul Reidy

Benzema wins 66th Ballon d'Or award

no surprises as the winner is the France and Real Madrid striker who is beaming as he collects the award. 

A popular decision as the hall chants 'Karim, 'Karim'.

The striker begins to offer words of thanks and cites Zizou and Ronaldo as inspirations.

William AllenPaul Reidy

and the 2022 Ballon d'Or winner is .... Karim Benzema (Real Madrid)

William AllenPaul Reidy

Drogba pays his own special tribute to Zizou recalling a game at the Bernabeu in the Champions League as Zidane talks about his own experience as a previous Ballon d'Or winner. The French player won the award in 1998.

William AllenPaul Reidy

Zinedine Zidane is on hand to present the award....

William AllenPaul Reidy

Ok, the big one.... the final countdown.....2022 Ballon d'Or

William AllenPaul Reidy

Ferran Soriano, Txiki Begiristain, Ederson and De Bruyne are on hand to be presented with the accolade.  

City have six players nominated tonight across the various available awards.

De Bruyne is called upon to speak and talks of the excitement of playing for the blue side of Manchester.

Txiki hails Guardiola as being a key part of the City project.

William AllenPaul Reidy

no, the winner is Manchester City !

William AllenPaul Reidy

The nominees are: Real Madrid, Liverpool FC and Manchester City.

William AllenPaul Reidy

Two to go.... next up Club of the Year I'd imagine......and indeed it is .... 

Luis Figo is on hand to present and I have a sneaking feeling that a certain club from the Chamartin area of the Spanish capital may win this one....

William AllenPaul Reidy

Full Yashin ranking

A Brazilian 2 and 3 in the overall top 10 with Liverpool's Alisson and City's Ederson sharing the podium with Courtois.


2022 Ballon d'Or (recap)

2022 Muller Award: Lewandowski (Bayern/FC Barcelona) 

2022 Yashin Award: Courtois (Real Madrid)

2022 Kopa Award - Gavi (FC Barcelona)

Socrates Award - Sadio Mane (Bayern Munich)

2022 Ballon d'Or Feminin - Alexia Putellas (FC Barcelona)

William AllenPaul Reidy

Countdown to the Ballon d'Or men's prize continues... Salah, Lewandowski, De Bruyne and Benzema are the final four...

William AllenPaul Reidy

2022 Yashin Award winner: Thibaut Courtois

The Real Madrid stopper will now set his sights on the forthcoming World Cup where he will be looking to progress with the 'Red Devils'.


...and the winner is Courtois. A worth winner and the Belgian keeper was a fundamental part of Real Madrid's LaLiga win and Champions League triumph in Paris.

The stopper has a few words for his club, Real Madrid team-mates and family. Short and sweet from the Belgian.

William AllenPaul Reidy

Next up, it's time for the Yashin (or Yachine) trophy for the Best Goalkeeper of the Season as Sebastien Haller is called upon to present. The BVB player talks about his setback after being diagnosed with cancer and talks about his treatment and rehabilitation process. 

Alisson, Courtois, Ederson, Maignan and Mendy are the five names on the shortlist.

William AllenPaul Reidy

Now we find out who is in 7th-5th place in the men's ranking:

7) Courtois (Real Madrid)

6) Mbappe (PSG)

5) Mo Salah (Liverpool)

William AllenPaul Reidy

So, four down and three to go.... the Yachine Award, Club of the Year and the men's 2022 award.

William AllenPaul Reidy

2022 Muller Award winner: Robert Lewandowski

The Polish striker has hit the ground running at new club FC Barcelona and has already bagged nine goals in his start with the Catalan side in LaLiga. 

William AllenPaul Reidy

This award will go to the top striker for the 2021-22 season and the winner goes to Robert Lewandowski.

Another award for FC Barcelona tonight with the Catalan club having scooped three of the four awards already handed out.

The Polish striker is really eloquent as he acknowledges that he his honoured to win the award and be associated with the name of Gerd Muller.

'Lewy' broke Muller's Bundesliga goal scoring record and gives thanks to his former Bayern Munich team-mates who helped him in achieving this feat at the Bavarian side.  

William AllenPaul Reidy

Next up it will be the 2022 Muller Award, another trophy paying tribute to a great with German striker Gerd Muller aka 'Der Bomber' one of the finest strikers in the game. Muller died in 2021 but left behind an incredible legacy scoring ten goals for the German national side at the 1970 World Cup.

William AllenPaul Reidy

Sheva's powerful words

"Please don't forget about Ukraine"


So, three awards gone, four to go... we know that tonight's winners so far are:

2022 Kopa Award - Gavi (FC Barcelona)

Socrates Award - Sadio Mane (Bayern Munich)

2022 Ballon d'Or Feminin - Alexia Putellas (FC Barcelona)

William AllenPaul Reidy

Alexia alluded that the recovery process is going slowly and we watch a video of her parents and team-mates adding their messages of support and urging Alexia to keep battling in coming back stronger than ever. 

William AllenPaul Reidy

Alexia Putellas: 2022 Ballon d'Or winner

Great speech from Alexia as she looks back on her year with the ACL injury a massive setback.

William AllenPaul Reidy

A massive honour for the FC Barcelona Femeni player who was forced to pull out on the eve of the Women's Euro 2022 with a cruciate ligament injury that still has the Barça player sidelined. 

Alexia expresses her delight on winning the award and talks about her injury and the setback it presented but thanks her team-mates and club for helping her during the rough time. 'It's an honour to play for FC Barcelona' 

William AllenPaul Reidy

Now is the time...who is the Ballon d"or 2022 Feminin winner?

And once again, it's Alexia 

William AllenPaul Reidy

Shevchenko is asked about the situation in Ukraine and speaks with clear emotion as he confirms his pride for his fellow Ukrainians. The former Milan and Chelsea pleads that we don't forget that the war is still ongoing and is clearly moved by the reception from the crowd at the Theatre du Chatelet.

William AllenPaul Reidy

Now it's time for the 2022 Ballon d'Or Femenin.....

Alexia Putellas is highly tipped to regain his crown having won the 2021 prize. 

Andrei Shevchenko will award this honour ....

William AllenPaul Reidy

Mane wins first ever Socrates Award

The Senegal and Bayern Munich striker talks about how he always tries to use his profile in football to make people's lives better.


Brazilian Rai will present the first ever Socrates Award....

and the winner is Sadio Mane


William AllenPaul Reidy

Socrates Award

The new award takes centre stage and we take a look back at the great Brazilian who was more than a player, he was also an activist and fought for democracy in his native Brazil in turbulent times for the South American nation.

He died in 2011 at the age of 57 but his legend lives on and this new award is a fitting tribute to his legacy.


William AllenPaul Reidy

Now a rundown of the men's award with 10th to 8th place.....

10) Erling Haaland (Manchester City and Norway)

9) Luka Modric (Real Madrid and Croatia)

8) Vinicius (Real Madrid and Brazil)

William AllenPaul Reidy

Kopa Award final voting

Camavinga and Musiala shared the podium with the FC Barcelona star. Two Kopa Award's back to back for FC Barcelona with Pedri winning the 2021 award.


So the winner of the first of seven awards goes to FC Barcelona and Gavi. A big boost for the club after the disappointment of losing Sunday's El Clasico to Real Madrid. 

William AllenPaul Reidy

The Barcelona player take to the stage and addresses the audience in Spanish as he gives thanks to his club, family and teammates as we look back at a highlights reel of the Barcelona star in action.

William AllenPaul Reidy

and the 2022 winner of the Kopa Award is .....Gavi of FC Barcelona

William AllenPaul Reidy

First award tonight will be the Kopa Trophy.

This award is another prestigious honour on the night, which is given to the best-performing player under the age of 21.

Ronaldo and Pedri will present the 2022 award.

William AllenPaul Reidy

Drogba talks about the new Socrates Award and explains how this award will be given. 


William AllenPaul Reidy

Tonight's ceremony will once again be hosted by Sandy Heribert (French television host) and former player Didier Drogba.

We are treated to a look back at some of the Ballon d'Or winners of the past.... 

William AllenPaul Reidy

We're underway at the Theatre du Chatelet as Italian tenor Andrea Bocelli treats us to a rendition of the classic Nessun Dorma.

Hard not to think of Italia 90 when this belts out.

William AllenPaul Reidy

What a duo !

Ronaldo and Figo arrived as part of the Real Madrid delegation with club president Florentino Perez, keeper Courtois and hot favourite to scoop the 2022 Ballon'd"or Karim Benzema.


The final few guests make their way inside the hall to take their seats with Florentino Perez (Real Madrid president) rather impressive singing Benzema's praises in rather decent French !

We're just ten minutes away from the official ceremony starting.

William AllenPaul Reidy

What we don't know at this stage is in which order each prize will be awarded. Remember that there are 7 awards to be handed out tonight. Men's and Women's 2022 Ballon D'Or.

The Yachine and Kopa Awards for best keeper and U-21 player. Along with the Socrates Award, Muller Award and Club of the Year award.

The Socrates Award goes to the best social initiative in the game and the Muller Award for the best striker. 

William AllenPaul Reidy

Alexia Putellas is one of the leading favourites to claim her second Ballon d"Or Femenin after winning the award for the first time last year. Beth Mead and Sam Kerr are her main rivals in scooping tonight's prize.

William AllenPaul Reidy

FC Barcelona delegation arrrive

Robert Lewandowski is the main attraction for the local media as he arrives with Gavi and Pedri. The Polish striker reaffirms how happy he is with the move to the Catalan club as the FCB Femenini quartet of Alexia, Oshoala, Rolfö & Lucy Bronze pose for the cameras. The group led by club president Joan Laporta.

William AllenPaul Reidy

A mixture of cheers and boos greet Mbappe

A mixed reaction to the PSG striker with a few fans possibly keen to show their frustration after recent rumours suggesting the French striker was looking for an exit from the Ligue 1 side in the new year. 

No words from Mbappe as heads straight into the hall.


William AllenPaul Reidy

Benzema arrives

One of the biggest cheers of the night rings out as Karim Benzema arrives. The Lyon born striker is the red hot favourite to scoop the 2022 Ballon d'Or award. 

Benzema claims to be 'happy' to be cited as favourite and looking forward to the event.

William AllenPaul Reidy

Figo and Ronaldo arrive

Two recent legends of the game arrive linking arms with two time winner Ronaldo and current the owner of LaLiga side Real Valladolid and Figo working with UEFA.

Ronaldo confident that Benzema will scoop the award. 

William AllenPaul Reidy

Zizou arrives

A major cheer rings out from the fans gathered outside the Theatre du Chatelet as Zidane arrives. The ever elegant Frenchman looking resplendent in a striking blue suit with sky blue shirt. 

Benzema gets Zizou's vote for the men's Ballon d'Or award!

William AllenPaul Reidy

What's being awarded tonight ?

The 66th Ballon d’Or award ceremony will see the awarding of seven prestigious awards with both men’s and women’s players of the years to be recognised along with the Kopa Trophy (for the best performing player under the age of 21) and the Yashin Trophy (for the best goalkeeper). The newly named Muller Award (after legendary German striker Gerd Muller) will also be confirmed for the best striker, along with the Socrates Award marking the best social initiatives within the game along with the club of the year prize.

William AllenPaul Reidy
Ballon d'or

Tonight's hosts

Heribert and Drogba pose ahead of hosting the 2022 Ballon d'Or awards at the Theatre du Chatalet in Paris tonight.

William AllenPaul Reidy

Less than an hour to go to the ceremony officially kicks-off. 

This year's ceremony will once again be hosted by Sandy Heribert (French television host) and former player Didier Drogba.

William AllenPaul Reidy
Ederson and DeBruyne pose

The Manchester City duo pose for the cameras on the red carpet at the Theatre du Chatelet ahead of the 2022 Ballon d'Or awards tonight.

William AllenPaul Reidy

Christopher Nkunku looking forward to the event

The RB Leipzig is the next big name to arrive and claims to be looking forward to the gala.

England international Beth Mead is next up and admits that it would be a 'dream come true' to win the Ballon d'Or Femenin.

A big cheer greets Sadio Mane as the Senegal striker looks sharp in a grey suit. Mane recalls his time starting out at Metz and claims that the 2021-22 season was one of the best with Senegal winning the Africa Cup of Nations.

William AllenPaul Reidy

De Bruyne and family arrive

The Belgian and City player will still be smarting from the Sky Blues losing their first game of the 2022-23 campaign yesterday with a 1-0 defeat to Liverpool.

City's Ederson is also with the Belgian player and De Bruyne is in the Top 10 shortlist.

William AllenPaul Reidy

Deciding the Ballon d'Or

A select number of global journalists from are asked to vote for their top five players.

The criteria given to the media are:

Individual and collective performances during the year

Player class in terms of fair play and talent

An overall judgement of the player’s career

William AllenPaul Reidy


Laporta will join FCB expedition in Paris

Finally, FC Barcelona's Joan Laporta will be in Paris tonight for the Ballon d'Or awards. Initially the president had decided against travelling to the French capital but will join the azulgrana delegation of Lewandowski, Gavi, Alexia, Oshoala, Rolfö y Bronze.

William AllenPaul Reidy

Shevchenko in Paris

The former Ukraine captain and manager speaks to journalists and recalls his winning of the award back in 2004. The former Chelsea and Milan player is a key activist in ensuring an end to Russian aggression in his native Ukraine but no questions regarding the war are forthcoming.


Tonight is the 66th time the Ballon d'Or awards will be presented as a delegation from Olympique Lyon's women's team arrive. Ada Hegerberg won the award in 2018 and affirms that after recent injury problems is 'delighted to be in Paris to celebrate again'.

Jean Pierre Papin and former PSG hero Rai are the next to tread the red carpet. 

The rain really is a headache for organisers as assistants with umbrellas have to accompany every guest to ensure that the tuxedos and ball dresses don't get a soaking.

William AllenPaul Reidy
 Kevin Trapp & Izabel Goulard

Kevin Trapp & Izabel Goulard / ALAIN JOCARD / AFP

Trapp and wife arrive

Eintracht Frankfurt goalkeeper Kevin Trapp and his wife, Brazilian model Izabel Goulard, pose on their arrival at the Ballon d'Or award ceremony and are some of the first big name stars to walk down the red carpet outside the Theatre du Chatelet.

William AllenPaul Reidy

...and there there were 10

Ten names are outstanding from the original shortlist of 30. 

One from: Karim Benzema, Robert Lewandowski, Vinicius Jr., Erling Haaland, Thibaut Courtois, Kylian Mbappe, Mo Salah, Sadio Mane, Luka Modric and Kevin de Bruyne will walk away with the 2022 Ballon d'Or award tonight

William AllenPaul Reidy

Son at 11th

The Tottenham and Korea Republic player Hueng-Min Son clocks in at 11th place in the ranking for the 2022 Ballon d'Or. 

The Spurs star will be one of the key players for the Korean side at the forthcoming World Cup with South Korea pitted with Uruguay, Ghana and Portugal.


The first guests are starting to arrive at the Theatre du Chatelet in Paris and it's a grim October night in the French capital with constant drizzle and overcast skies.

William AllenPaul Reidy
Riyad Mahrez

Mahrez / Laurence Griffiths / Getty Images

Mahrez at #12

The Algeria and Manchester City player clocks in at No. 12 in the overall Ballon d'Or 2022 ranking for the best player for the 2021-22 season.

William AllenPaul Reidy

Leâo and Fabinho tied at #14th with Haller at 13

AC Milan striker Rafael Leâo and Liverpool defender Fabinho are tied at 14th in the ranking.

From what we understand, France Football and L'Equipe plan to countdown to 11th place ahead of the awards. 

Dortmund's Sebastien Haller clocks in at 13th place in the ranking.


We're 30 minutes away from the first guests arriving at the Theatre du Chatelet in Paris where they will tread the famous 'red carpet'. 

We'll bring you all the snaps as the footballing royalty arrive.

William AllenPaul Reidy

Why Benzema deserves the Ballon d'Or

The France and Real Madrid striker may be experiencing a dip in form currently, but like a fine French wine, the striker shows no sign of slowing down and was superb last season....50 goals and a Champions League medal alone see the forward as a solid bet for the award.

.... remember the Ballon d'Or this year is based on the 2021-22 season and not the 2022 calendar year as in previous years.


Virgil van Dijk

Virgil van Dijk / JASON CAIRNDUFF / Action Images via Reuters

Virgil van Dijk at 16

The Netherlands and Liverpool central defender comes in at 16th in the 2022 Ballon d'Or ranking as the countdown continues. 

William AllenPaul Reidy

The countdown continues.....

Next up we have another tie with three player at the No. 17 place

Luis Diaz (Liverpool & Colombia)

Dusan Vlahovic (Fiorentina/Juventus & Serbia) 

Casemiro (Real Madrid/Man United & Brazil)


CR7 @ 20

Six time Ballon d'Or winner Cristiano Ronaldo (Manchester United and Portugal) clocks in at 20th place in the 2022 rankings.

At least the Portuguese striker with Leo Messi being omitted from the 30 man shortlist. 


Kane at 21

The Spurs striker and England captain comes in at 21st place in the 2022 Ballon d'Or ranking


Tied at #22

There is also a tie for 22nd place with:

Phil Foden (Manchester City & England)

Bernardo Silva (Man City & Portugal)

Trent Alexander Arnold (Liverpool & England)



Men's Ballon d'Or countdown begins

Slightly later than advertised, France Football have now begun the ranking countdown for the men’s Ballon d’Or.

To start off with, there is a six-way for 25th place, shared by João Cancelo, Joshua Kimmich, Mike Maignan, Christopher Nkunku, Darwin Núñez and Antonio Rüdiger.

Five reasons why Karim Benzema deserves to win the Ballon d’Or

France Football should be commencing its ranking reveal very shortly.

In the meantime, let me point you in the direction of this piece by AS journalist Marco Ruiz, who has listed five reasons why Real Madrid's Karim Benzema deserves to win the men's Ballon d'Or.

William Allen
What are the new changes to the Ballon d'Or 2021/22?

You may have noticed that the lists of nominees only include players' clubs in the 2021/22 season - that's because the rules of the Ballon d'Or have changed this year. 

The award used to take into account players' performances over the calendar year, but starting in 2022, the jury of journalists that select the prize winners have been told to focus on the 2021/22 season. That brings it into line with FIFA's The Best awards, which also consider the past campaign, rather than the calendar year.

Among the other changes made to the Ballon d'Or this year is the size of the juries. For the men's Ballon d'Or, only journalists from the top 100-ranked nations will get a vote. In the women's Ballon d'Or, meanwhile, the jury has been cut down to journalists from the top 50 countries.

Take a look at all the changes to the 2022 Ballon d'Or award process

William Allen

Lewandowski not among bookies' chief favourites

Robert Lewandowski, who has won the last two FIFA The Best Men's Player awards, would surely have collected the Ballon d'Or in 2020 had that edition of the award not been cancelled because of the pandemic.

That year, he starred in Bayern Munich's 2019/20 Champions League win, top-scoring in Europe's elite club competition with 15 goals - just two short of the single-season record.

Lewandowski finished second to Lionel Messi in the 2021 Ballon d'Or voting.

Last term, the Pole scored 50 goals in 46 games for Bayern - decent, like - but is not among the chief favourites for the men's Ballon d'Or award in 2022. He's behind the likes of Karim Benzema, Erling Haaland and Kylian Mbappé in the betting.


Barça dominate Women's Ballon d'Or nominees

A quarter of the Women's Ballon d'Or shortlist is made up of current Barcelona players: Alexia Putellas, Aitana Bonmatí, Asisat Oshoala and Fridolina Rolfö all helped the Blaugrana to a third straight Spanish league and cup double last term, while Lucy Bronze joined in the summer from English Women's Super League club Manchester City.


Arsenal trio up for awards

Arsenal's Beth Mead, Vivianne Miedema and Bukayo Saka also embarked on their journey to France a little earlier today.

After starring for England in their Euro 2022 victory this summer, Mead is high up on many observers' lists of the favourites for the Women's Ballon d'Or.


Benzema and Courtois on their way to Paris

Real Madrid's Karim Benzema and Thibaut Courtois, who are both among the chief candidates for an award today, set off together for Paris a short while ago.

Here they are, posing for the camera on the plane with the broadest of smiles on their faces. 


Who are the nominees for the Yashin Trophy?

The 10 men's goalkeepers nominated for the Yashin Trophy, which is named after 1963 Ballon d'Or winner Lev Yashin, are:

Alisson (Liverpool/Brazil)
Bono (Sevilla/Morocco)
Thibaut Courtois (Real Madrid/Belgium)
Ederson (Manchester City/Brazil
Hugo Lloris (Tottenham/France)
Mike Maignan (AC Milan/France)
Édouard Mendy (Chelsea/Senegal)
Manuel Neuer (Bayern Munich/Germany)
Jan Oblak (Atlético Madrid/Slovenia)
Kevin Trapp (Eintracht Frankfurt/Germany)

*Only players' club(s) in the 2021/22 season are shown.

(Photo: REUTERS/Violeta Santos Moura)

William Allen

Who are the 2022 Kopa Trophy nominees?

The 10-player shortlist for the Kopa Trophy, given to the best men's under-21 player in 2021/22, is:

Karim Adeyemi (RB Salzburg/Germany)
Jude Bellingham (Borussia Dortmund/England)
Eduardo Camavinga (Real Madrid/France)
Gavi (Barcelona/Spain)
Ryan Gravenberch (Ajax/Netherlands)
Josko Gvardiol (RB Leipzig/Croatia)
Nuno Mendes (Sporting CP/PSG/Portugal)
Jamal Musiala (Bayern Munich/Germany)
Bukayo Saka (Arsenal/England)
Florian Wirtz (Bayer Leverkusen/Germany)

*Only players' club(s) in the 2021/22 season are shown.

(Photo: Maja Hitij/Getty Images)

William Allen

Who are the 2022 Women's Ballon d'Or nominees?

The 20-player shortlist for the Women's Ballon d'Or is:

Selma Bacha (Lyon/France)
Aitana Bonmatí (Barcelona/Spain)
Millie Bright (Chelsea/England)
Lucy Bronze (Manchester City/England)
Kadidiatou Diani (PSG/France)
Christiane Endler (Lyon/Chile)
Ada Hegerberg (Lyon/Norway)
Marie-Antoinette Katoto (PSG/France)
Sam Kerr (Chelsea/Australia)
Catarina Macario (Lyon/USWNT)
Beth Mead (Arsenal/England)
Vivianne Miedema (Arsenal/Netherlands)
Alex Morgan (Orlando Pride/San Diego Wave/USWNT)
Lena Oberdorf (Wolfsburg)
Asisat Oshoala (Barcelona/Nigeria)
Alexandra Popp (Wolfsburg/Germany)
Alexia Putellas (Barcelona/Spain)
Wendie Renard (Lyon/France)
Trinity Rodman (Washington Spirit/USWNT)
Fridolina Rolfö (Barcelona/Sweden)

*Only players' club(s) in the 2021/22 season are shown


William Allen

Who are the 2022 men's Ballon d'Or nominees?

The 30-player, Messi-less shortlist for the men's Ballon d'Or is:

Thibaut Courtois - Real Madrid/Belgium
Rafael Leão - AC Milan/Portugal
Christopher Nkunku - RB Leipzig/France
Mohamed Salah - Liverpool/Egypt
Joshua Kimmich - Bayern Munich/Germany
Trent Alexander-Arnold - Liverpool/England
Vinícius Júnior - Real Madrid/Brazil
Bernardo Silva - Manchester City/Portugal
Luis Díaz - Porto/Liverpool/Colombia
Robert Lewandowski - Bayern Munich/Poland
Riyad Mahrez - Manchester City/Algeria
Casemiro - Real Madrid/Brazil
Son Heung-min - Tottenham Hotspur/South Korea
Fabinho - Liverpool/Brazil
Karim Benzema - Real Madrid/France
Mike Maignan - AC Milan/France
Harry Kane - Tottenham Hotspur/England
Darwin Núñez - Benfica/Uruguay
Phil Foden - Manchester City/England
Sadio Mané - Liverpool/Senegal
Sebastien Haller - Ajax/Ivory Coast
Luka Modric - Real Madrid/Croatia
Antonio Rüdiger - Chelsea/Germany
Cristiano Ronaldo - Manchester United/Portugal
Kevin De Bruyne - Manchester City/Belgium
Dusan Vlahovic - Fiorentina/Juventus/Serbia
Virgil van Dijk - Liverpool/Netherlands
João Cancelo - Manchester City/Portugal
Kylian Mbappé - Paris Saint-Germain/France
Erling Haaland - Borussia Dortmund/Norway

*Only players' club(s) in 2021/22 are shown


William Allen

Ballon d'Or gala 2022: headlines

- Ceremony due to start in Paris at 8:30pm CEST/2:30pm ET

- France Football has already started counting down award rankings

- Karim Benzema the heavy favourite to win men's Ballon d'Or

- Alexia Putellas tipped to retain women's Ballon d'Or

- five other awards to be handed out in French capital

Related articles:

William Allen
Messi Ballon d'Or

Who are the award holders?

In last year's Ballon d'Or ceremony, also at Paris Theatre du Chatelet, the prizes went to:

- Men’s Ballon d’Or: Lionel Messi (PSG/Argentina)
- Women’s Ballon d’Or: Alexia Putellas (Barcelona/Spain)
- Yashin Trophy: Gianluigi Donnarumma (AC Milan/PSG/Italy)
- Kopa Trophy: Pedri (Barcelona/Spain)
- Striker of the Year: Robert Lewandowski (Bayern Munich/Poland)
- Best Club of the Year: Chelsea

Messi picked up a record seventh men's Ballon d'Or, but won't be collecting an eighth today. The Argentina captain isn't among the 30 nominees for the accolade - the first time since 2005 that he hasn't been shortlisted.

(Photo: REUTERS/Benoit Tessier)

William Allen
2022 Ballon d’Or awards ceremony: times, TV, how to watch and stream

If you're wondering how you can watch today's gala, let me suggest you avail yourself of my colleague Paul Reidy's guide on exactly that topic.

William Allen

Ballon d'Or gala 2022: headlines

- Ceremony due to start in Paris at 8:30pm CEST/2:30pm ET

- France Football to start counting down award rankings at 4:30pm CEST/10:30am ET

- Karim Benzema the heavy favourite to win men's Ballon d'Or

- Alexia Putellas tipped to retain women's Ballon d'Or

- five other awards to be handed out in French capital

William Allen

Today's schedule

The Ballon d'Or gala is scheduled to begin at 8:30pm CEST/2:30pm ET, but before then the attendees are expected on the red carpet from 7:50pm/1:50pm ET, France Football says.

What's more, the soccer magazine will start counting down the final award rankings well before the ceremony itself gets going: this process is set to commence at 4:30pm CEST/10:30am ET.


What awards are up for grabs?

In total, seven awards are due to be handed out in the French capital today. In addition to the men's and women's Ballons d'Or, we also have:

- the Yashin Trophy, for the world's outstanding men's goalkeeper

- the Kopa Trophy, for the best under-21 men's player

- the Müller Trophy, for the globe's top-performing men's striker

- the men's Club of The Year Award

- and the Socrates Award, which Ballon d'Or organisers France Football say “will identify the best solidarity actions carried out by committed champions”.


Ballon d'Or awards 2022: welcome!

Hello! In about six hours' time, the 2022 Ballon d'Or gala will get underway at Paris' Theatre du Chatelet, where we'll find out who has been chosen as last season's outstanding players in men's and women's soccer.

The ceremony itself is scheduled to start at 8:30pm CEST/2:30pm ET, but there'll be plenty happening in the hours before then. 

William AllenPaul Reidy