If we are to believe a report from a news agency, Cristiano Ronaldo lost his bid for the prestigious Ballon d’Or to Lionel Messi, yet again.
The report has people scratching their heads as Ronaldo was the heavy favorite, and especially considering that Messi has been out of action for some weeks.
Even though Cristiano Ronaldo was sidelined by a hamstring injury in Real Madrid’s Saturday game, he is expected to return this coming weekend.
The Spanish agency making the claim correctly guessed the exact order of the top five finalists last year. This is why people are paying attention to the report in 2013.
Cristiano Ronaldo, who plays for Spanish team Real Madrid and is Portugal’s captain, has been on fire this year and is credited with leading his country to qualify for the World Cup.
Soccer’s ruling body, FIFA, had actually extended the voting period, as previously reported by The Inquisitr, due to the lack of interest shown by coaches, team captains, and the media in the process.
If Cristiano Ronaldo does indeed lose to Argentina’s star Lionel Messi, it would mark the fifth consecutive time the Barcelona striker takes the title from the Portuguese player.
Bookies have seen a dramatic shift in odds since it was suggested that Messi was leading Cristiano Ronaldo in the voting, according to the British publication Mirror.
Bookie William Hill’s spokesman Tony Kenny said:
“It seems the momentum is behind Messi. The market has changed over the last few days. Ronaldo remains the 4/6 favorite – although he has drifted from 4/11. Messi has come in the betting from 4/1 into 11/10 – this is market forces and punter support – which is probably linked to the Agencia story”
“It’s a really strange market – and certainly we’ve never seen anything like it.” Kenny adds.
Experts believe that it would be unfair to overlook Cristiano Ronaldo since he has scored 32 goals this season, with 14 of those goals coming in the last seven games.
Messi has only scored 14 times, compared to 56 in 2012.
Cristiano Ronaldo was criticized by FIFA boss, Sepp Blatter, earlier this year when he suggested that Ronaldo spends more time at the hairdresser than playing soccer.
Ronaldo came back swinging and threatened to boycott the Ballon d’Or award ceremony.
It has become a bit of a ritual that Messi always wins the award, which honors the best performance by a player during any given year. This would be the fifth straight time Cristiano Ronaldo loses to the Argentine.
UEFA president Michel Platini says the vote for Ballon d’Or this year will be the “hardest in history.”
“It seems that the favorites are Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo and Ribery. The first two are very good and Ribery is the one who has won everything.” Platini said.
“They are three great players. The choice of the Ballon d’Or this year is the most difficult in the history of the trophy. The voting extension was a FIFA decision, though it happened to coincide with Portugal reaching the World Cup thanks to three goals from Cristiano Ronaldo against Sweden.”
The official announcement of the Ballon d’Or winner will be made on January 13 in Zurich.
Who do you think should win the trophy this year, Cristiano Ronaldo or Lionel Messi?