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‘The Ballon d’Or is Messi and Messi is the Ballon d’Or’: France Football chief sends message to Haaland & Mbappe

Director of France Football Pascal Ferre has been speaking about the Ballon d’Or

France Football are responsible for the 30-man shortlist. The award is almost certainly set to be won by Karim Benzema of Real Madrid this year and Ferre believes Real Madrid do an excellent job of making sure they have a good chance of winning it each year.

While five Real players are nominated this year, Ferre believes that president Florentino Perez is careful to ensure his club have one clear star in the team:

“Florentino Perez orchestrates the campaigns well,” Ferre told the EFE Agency.

“There are machines like Real Madrid that are very strong. Their intelligence is that they support a single player. For years it was Cristiano Ronaldo and now it’s Karim Benzema. That prevents the votes from being dispersed.

“They know how this works. It’s no coincidence if it’s the club that has won it the most times.”

Ferre also stated that the Ballon d’Or is an award that means more to players than any other, but warned the next generation of football stars that they have a long way to go before they are ready to take the baton from Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo:

“The Ballon d’Or is Messi and Messi is the Ballon d’Or. It is a very important award for them. The Ballon d’Or is one of the few things that cannot be bought. That makes them humble in the face of this type of reward, it makes them children.

“There is a lot of talk about the rivalry between Mbappe and Haaland, but neither of them has won the Champions League. At Mbappe’s age, Messi already had two Ballon d’Ors. If they want to establish a similar rivalry they have to start winning big trophies already. Messi and Ronaldo didn’t take so long.”

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Josh Barker

Middlesbrough fan from the North East of England. @JoshBarker979 on Twitter.

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