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Ballon d’Or 2013: Cristiano Ronaldo favourite as Fifa extends voting period

Ballon d'Or 2013: Fifa has extended the voting period for the award, opening the door for Cristiano Ronaldo to steal the crown

The Sport Review staff
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Lionel Messi has won the Ballon d'Or for the last four yearsPhoto: FIFA/Getty Images

Fifa has extended the voting period for the Ballon d’Or, opening the door for Cristiano Ronaldo to snatch Lionel Messi’s world player of the year award.

The original deadline passed on Friday, but players, coaches and members of the media now have until 29 November to make their choice, with the prize to be presented in Zurich on 13 January.

Fifa said that the decision to re-open the voting, which initially closed prior to Tuesday’s World Cup play-offs, was made as a result of a low response from members of all three voting categories.

The news comes after Portugal captain Cristiano Ronaldo, now the favourite to win the award, netted a sublime hat-trick against Sweden to seal his country’s place at next summer’s World Cup.

“Due to a low number of responses from coaches and captains of the national teams as well as media representatives and in order to ensure a representative number of votes Fifa and France Football have extended the deadline for the voting until 29 November 2013,” said a Fifa spokesperson.

“Member Associations and media representatives who had been invited to vote on the above mentioned awards have been informed accordingly.

“Votes which had already been submitted can be changed until November 29.”

Barcelona star Lionel Messi, the winner of the Ballon d’Or for the last four years, is currently sidelined with a hamstring injury.

Enhanced odds: Get 12/1 on on Man Utd, Spurs and Chelsea to win

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