Ballon d’Or 2013: Cristiano Ronaldo beats Lionel Messi to top prize

Ballon d'Or 2013: Real Madrid star Cristiano Ronaldo beats Lionel Messi and Franck Ribéry to win the award

Martin Caparrotta
By Martin Caparrotta in Zurich
ballon d'or 2013
Cristiano Ronaldo, Lionel Messi and Franck Ribéry Photo: The Sport Review

It was fifth time lucky for Cristiano Ronaldo as he finally ended Lionel Messi’s dominance of the Ballon d’Or award to be crowned the best player in the world.

The 28-year-old Real Madrid star finished the year having scored a remarkable 66 goals in 56 appearances for club and country, while also notching up 15 assists for his team-mates.

There are no words to describe this moment

Cristiano Ronaldo

Ronaldo’s triumph ended Messi’s dominance of world football’s most prestigious individual prize, with the Argentina international having won the award for the last four years running. Bayern Munich’s Franck Ribery was the other nominee.

“There are no words to describe this moment,” said an emotional Ronaldo upon receiving the award, which he last won back in 2008. “I want to thank all my team-mates at Real Madrid, the Portuguese team and my family who are here with me today.

“Those who know me know that many people help me; my manager, our club president. Many people who are here. And I don’t want to forget to mention Eusébio, my girlfriend who is here today, and my son.

“If I have forgotten anyone I’m sorry, because I’m deeply moved.”

Ronaldo secured the accolade with 1,365 points, ahead of Messi with 1,205 points and Ribéry with 1,127 points.

The former Manchester United forward later added: “It’s something that I’ve worked hard for and dedicated myself all the time. It’s a fantastic moment for me, for my team-mates and for my national team. I’m so proud.”

The award is voted for by national team managers and captains, and selected journalists named on a list compiled by France Football and Fifa.

Meanwhile, former Bayern Munich boss Jupp Heynckes won the coach of the year award ahead of ex-Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson and Borussia Dortmund head coach Jurgen Klopp.

“It means a lot to pick up an award right at the end of my career,” said Heynckes. “Normally in team sports it is often difficult to put things together like this. It isn’t just down to me this is down to the whole club, Bayern Munich, everybody that has been working with me during this period.

“Maybe 10 years ago, I wouldn’t even have dreamt of this. I am humbled and happy to be standing here. Thank you very much.”

Ex-International Olympic Committee president Jacques Rogge was selected by Sepp Blatter as the winner of the Fifa presidential award.

“I don’t know if I ever will deserve to join the past winners but this award makes me extremely proud, happy and thankful,” said Rogge, 71. “Both the IOC and Fifa have the same vision – that sport is at the service of humankind.”

Ballon d’Or 2013: Award winners in full

Ballon d’Or: Cristiano Ronaldo

Men’s coach of the year: Jupp Heynckes

Women’s player of the year: Nadine Angerer

Women’s coach of the year: Silvia Neid

Puskas goal of the year award: Zlatan Ibrahimovic (Sweden 4 England 2, November 2012)

Ballon d’Or Prix d’Honneur Pele

Fifa fair play award: Afghanistan Football Federation

Fifa presidential award: Jacques Rogge

Fifa/FifPro World XI 2013: Manuel Neuer (Bayern Munich and Germany); Dani Alves (Barcelona and Brazil), Philipp Lahm (Bayern Munich and Germany), Thiago Silva (Paris St-Germain and Brazil), Sergio Ramos (Real Madrid and Spain); Xavi (Barcelona and Spain), Andres Iniesta (Barcelona and Spain), Franck Ribery (Bayern Munich and France); Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid and Portugal), Zlatan Ibrahimovic (Paris St-Germain and Sweden), Lionel Messi (Barcelona and Argentina).

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