IN PICS: Ronaldo wins Ballon d'Or

Sport360 staff 23:04 12/12/2016

Real Madrid star Cristiano Ronaldo was a worthy winner of the 2016 Ballon d’Or, his efforts in helping his club side winning the UEFA Champions League and nation clinching the European Championship acknowledged by France Football and FIFA.

It is Ronaldo’s fourth Ballon d’Or and sees him pip long-time rival Lionel Messi to the gong.

Ronaldo first won the Ballon d’Or in 2008 after Premier League and Champions League triumphs with Manchester United.

But it was only in 2013 that he added his second — Messi had hogged it before then — and Ronaldo made it a hat-trick the following year.

The first Ballon d’Or was won by Stanley Matthews, at the time with Blackpool, who beat Alfredo Di Stefano for the inaugural title in 1956.

This year marks the end of six years of joint awards by founders France Football and FIFA, which will revert to bestowing a “Best” accolade of its own on January 9 to both male and female players.

The Ballon d’Or will henceforth be decided by a vote of 173 journalists while national team captains and managers will no longer have a say.

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