He’s clearly biased, but according to his agent Jorge Mendes, Cristiano Ronaldo deserves to win the 2021 FIFA Ballon d’Or. It would be the sixth player of the year award of his career and put him on par with Lionel Messi for most all-time.
Messi, Robert Lewandowski and Jorginho are some of the names discussed as potential winners though a groundswell of support is building for Liverpool’s Mohamed Salah based on his recent form.
Mendes feels he has done more than enough to win it despite ending last season with just one trophy to his name: the 2021 Italian Coppa Italia.
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Case for Cristiano Ronaldo to win Ballon d’Or
“The figures and statistics linked to the name of Cristiano Ronaldo speak for him and should be enough in my opinion for him to win another Ballon d’Or,” Mendes told France Football. “The absolutely remarkable total of 115 goals for the Portuguese national team makes him the record holder in the history of men’s international football. This year he broke this 15-year-old record, to which he can add that to being the top scorer in the history of professional football.
“All these achievements, which represent the greatest performance in football history, should be decisive in the awarding of the trophy, as he continues to demonstrate that he is, without a doubt, the best football player in the world of all time.”
The fact that Ronaldo finished as the top scorer in both the Italian Serie A (29 goals in 2020-21) and the 2021 European Championship (five goals) are other relevant credentials, but Mendes feels that his overall records should come into play.
Ronaldo has scored 115 times for Portugal to become the highest-scoring player in men’s international football and during the October international break he became the first player to score 10 hat-tricks at the international level in a 5-0 win against Luxembourg.
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“He holds the record for goals in the Champions League and he is the only player in the world to have won everything in three different countries with the maximum competitiveness, as was the case in England, Italy and Spain.
“All this at the age of 36, with absolutely unique consistency, commitment and a phenomenal ability to overcome difficulties. In my opinion, this year the Ballon d’Or has a name: Cristiano Ronaldo. For me, he has never deserved it so much.”
Since his return to Manchester United, Ronaldo has also scored five times in seven matches across the Premier League and Champions League.
FIFA Ballon d’Or: Who will win?
Lewandowski has been touted as one of the favourites to win the award due to his exploits for Bayern Munich last season. He finished last season with 41 goals in the Bundesliga from just 29 matches, while he also netted five across six Champions League appearances.
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This season, the Poland international has 11 goals from nine games in the Bundesliga and Champions League.
Chelsea star Jorginho has also been highlighted as a top contender after playing a crucial role in his side’s Champions League-winning campaign and Italy’s Euro 2021 championship run.
Despite having a disappointing season with Barcelona, Messi is in the frame, having won his first major international trophy with Argentina as they won the Copa America this summer. Similar to Ronaldo, he won the Spanish domestic cup, the Copa del Rey.