Messi and Ronaldo are sharing 11 Golden Ball awards. But it is frequently argued if the two legends always deserved the awards they won.
Let’s look at the seasons between 2012-2014 years:
2012 – Iniesta
2012 was the best year of Iniesta’s career. But “unfortunately” at the same time, Lionel Messi had the best year of his career, in which the Argentine managed to score 92 goals.
Iniesta has scored in the Super Cup this year against Real Madrid, Milan in the quarterfinals of the league, Chelsea in the semi-finals, and finished the season with 8 goals and 12 assists. In the summer, Iniesta won the European Championship, where he was named the best player of the tournament. In the awarding of the Ballon d’Or, after Messi and Ronaldo, he gained the most – 10.91% of the vote.
2013 – Ribery
In 2013, the main favorite to win the Ballon d’Or was Frank Ribery. Bayern Munich won the triplet that year, and Ribery became the leader of the team.
In November 2013, UEFA made a very scandalous decision when the final date for the Ballon d’Or vote was postponed from October 28 to November 29 and allowed journalists to change their voices.
Meanwhile, Ronaldo played a hat-trick against Sweden, which took Portugal to the World Cup, and according to some fans, FIFA’s goal was to give Ronaldo the upper hand.
2014 – Neuer
2014 was an exemplary year for Neuer. The German goalkeeper kept the door dry in 24 matches, with the Champions League semi-final against Arsenal and Manchester United leading to the semi-finals, including a penalty for Mesut Yozil that Bayern won 2-0.
In the summer, Neuer became a world champion. In group matches against Portugal and the United States, Manuel kept the door dry. He did not miss a single goal from France in the 1/4 final. In the semi-final, Germany defeated Brazil, and Neuer scored one goal in the last minutes.
On the golden ball, Neuer received the largest share of votes (15.72) after Ronaldo (37%) and Messi (15.76%).