Wayne Rooney and more: Twitter reacts as Lionel Messi wins Ballon d’Or 2015

Wayne Rooney and Alan Shearer both tweet their thoughts as Lionel Messi beats Cristiano Ronaldo to win his fifth Ballon d'Or award

Lionel Messi won his fifth Ballon d’Or award on Monday night, beating off competition from Cristiano Ronaldo and Neymar to claim the prize for the first time since 2012.

The 28-year-old Argentina international took 41.33 per cent of the vote, with Real Madrid forward Cristiano Ronaldo (27.76 per cent) second and Barca’s Neymar (7.86 per cent) third.

Messi scored 48 goals in 56 games for club and country in 2015 as he inspired Barcelona to a La Liga, Champions League and Copa del Rey treble last season.

Either Messi or Ronaldo – who collected the prize for the last two years – have won the past eight awards.

The prize, regarded as football’s most prestigious individual award, is voted for by national team managers and captains, and selected journalists named on a list compiled by France Football and Fifa.

Messi’s fifth triumph inevitably prompted plenty of activity on social media – and here are some of our favourite updates following the 2015 Ballon d’Or gala in Zurich.

Rio Ferdinand
Rio Ferdinand offers open advice to Chelsea FC midfielder
Paul Merson
Paul Merson predicts where Man United and Liverpool FC will finish
Alan Shearer (Photo: BBC Sport / Screengrab)
Alan Shearer: What I really think about Anthony Martial at Man United
Rio Ferdinand
Rio Ferdinand sends clear message to on-loan Man United midfielder
Gary Neville
Gary Neville delivers his verdict on Liverpool FC after Everton defeat
Rio Ferdinand
Rio Ferdinand offers open advice to Chelsea FC midfielder
Paul Merson
Paul Merson predicts where Man United and Liverpool FC will finish
Alan Shearer (Photo: BBC Sport / Screengrab)
Alan Shearer: What I really think about Anthony Martial at Man United
Rio Ferdinand
Rio Ferdinand sends clear message to on-loan Man United midfielder
Gary Neville
Gary Neville delivers his verdict on Liverpool FC after Everton defeat
Top 50 Muslim footballers: Arsenal, Chelsea FC, Liverpool FC and Man United stars feature
Top 50 Muslim footballers: Arsenal, Chelsea FC, Liverpool FC and Man United stars feature