- Lionel Messi looks good for a seventh Ballon d’Or title after inspiring Argentina to Copa America glory last summer
- 90min has released a 15-man shortlist of players capable of winning the prestigious title this year following their performances
- The Ballon d'Or will return in 2021 with world football's biggest stars after a year break due to the coronavirus crisis
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Following his Copa America glory back in the summer, Argentine legend Lionel Messi joins a few contenders for this year’s coveted Balon d’Or award.
The former Barcelona captain also had a terrific season before he was forced out of the Spanish club as he joins French Ligue 1 side Paris Saint-Germain during the summer, MEN reports.
Also, Champions League winners for Chelsea Jorginho and N’Golo Kante are also tipped to contend with Messi for the prestigious award, but Bayern Munich striker Robert Lewandowski cannot be ruled out.
Italian goalkeeper Gianluigi Donnarumma was also tipped to win the Yashin Trophy following his exploits that saw Italy win Euro 2020 during the summer as he is expected to see off challenges from from Edouard Mendy and Ederson.
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After a one year break due to the pandemic, the Ballon d'Or will return in 2021 with world football's biggest stars set to descend on Paris in November.
90min compiles a list of potential winner of the Ballon d’or below
- Lionel Messi
- Robert Lewandowski
- N'Golo Kante
- Romelu Lukaku
- Kevin De Bruyne
- Harry Kane
- Cristiano Ronaldo
- Gianluigi Donnarumma
- Karim Benzema
- Erling Haaland
- Raheem Sterling
- Federico Chiesa
Cristiano Ronaldo wins first award since return to Man Utd
Meanwhile, Cristiano Ronaldo has been named Manchester United Player of the Month for September after scoring five goals in six fixtures in all competitions.
The 36-year-old Portuguese staged a sensational return to Old Trafford about 12 years after initially leaving them for Real Madrid in 2009.
He marked his dramatic comeback with a stunning brace against Newcastle United on his debut on September 11.
The five-time Ballon d'Or winner went ahead to score three more goals against Young Boys, West Ham and Villarreal in the month under review.
Rashford bags doctorate degree
Briefly News earlier reported that Marcus Rashford has been awarded a doctorate degree by the University of Manchester for helping fight poverty and his sporting achievements.
The 23-year-old joins the likes of legends Alex Ferguson and Bobby Charlton, making him the youngest person to receive the honour.
The Manchester-born star gave free meals to hundreds of thousands of school children during the coronavirus pandemic.
The England international has been out of action since playing a couple of minutes in the Euro 2020 tournament.