Cristiano Ronaldo has crowned a memorable year by being voted the winner of the Ballon d’Or.
The Portuguese star, who won the UEFA Champions League with his club before captaining Portugal to a first international trophy at UEFA EURO 2016, collected the most votes from a poll of journalists organised by France Football magazine.
Ronaldo won the Ballon d’Or in 2008 and also claimed the FIFA Ballon d’Or in 2013 and 2014, finishing second to Lionel Messi in 2009, 2011, 2012 and 2015; the Argentinian was runner-up in 2008, 2013 and 2014.
Ronaldo scored 16 times – one short of his own competition record – as Real Madrid won an 11th European Cup in May. He added three more in France as Portugal lifted the title, although he was forced off by injury early on in the final win against the hosts.
In total, the 31-year-old has managed 38 goals for Madrid and 13 for his country in 2016, and is also among the nominees for the UEFA.com Users’ Team of the Year.
— Champions League (@ChampionsLeague) December 12, 2016
Last nine awards*
2008 – Ronaldo
2009 – Messi
2010 – Messi
2011 – Messi
2012 – Messi
2013 – Ronaldo
2014 – Ronaldo
2015 – Messi
2016 – Ronaldo
All-time Ballon d’Or successes*
5 – Lionel Messi
4 – Cristiano Ronaldo
3 – Michel Platini
3 – Johan Cruyff
3 – Marco van Basten
France Football magazine has given the award every year since 1956; the past six editions – four won by Messi, two by Ronaldo – have been known as the FIFA Ballon d’Or, but football’s world governing body is no longer associated with the prize. The last player other than Messi or Ronaldo to win the award in either guise was Kaká in 2007.
*Statistics include the merged FIFA Ballon d’Or award.