Modric criticises Ballon d’Or gala snub by Messi, Ronaldo

Luka Modric wins the FIFA Best Player of the Year
Luka Modric wins the FIFA Best Player of the Year

Ballon d’Or winner Luka Modric has criticised Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi for choosing not to attend this month’s ceremony where he was given the award.

He said their decision was unfair to fellow players and voters.

Croatian captain Modric broke Messi and Ronaldo’s decade-long stranglehold on the prestigious prize last month.

He said in a newspaper interview on Saturday the pair’s absence from the gala in Paris on Dec. 3 did not make sense.

“I cannot speak about why someone didn’t turn up at an award ceremony, it’s their choice. It doesn’t make sense, does it?

“It seems these votes and awards are only significant when they win,” the Real Madrid midfielder told Croatian newspaper Sportske Novosti.

“It’s unfair to fellow players and voters who have nominated them in the past 10 years, as well as to football and the fans. However, people will act the way they think they should.”

Juventus forward Ronaldo came second in the 2018 Ballon d’Or vote behind his old Real team mate Modric, while Messi was fifth.

It was a ranking which met with some consternation at both the Argentine’s club FC Barcelona and in the Catalan media.

Modric lifted a third successive UEFA Champions League title with Real last season and led Croatia to a first-ever FIFA World Cup final.

But he said Ronaldo and Messi were still the best two players around, even as he added that it did not mean they should always be named best player each season.

“In my opinion, things are very simple: Ronaldo and Messi are phenomenons who have been dominant in the past 10 years or so. They’ve been in a league of their own,” Modric said.

“But we are talking about a season’s accomplishments here and I guess it means something that votes by national team coaches, managers, football legends, journalists and fellow players have produced the same results.”

The Croatian also offered the sarcastic suggestion: “If the debate is going to be about how good a particular player is, the only course of action is to award all trophies to Messi and Ronaldo until they retire and scrap the voting.”


Support PREMIUM TIMES' journalism of integrity and credibility


Good journalism costs a lot of money. Yet only good journalism can ensure the possibility of a good society, an accountable democracy, and a transparent government.

For continued free access to the best investigative journalism in the country we ask you to consider making a modest support to this noble endeavour.

By contributing to PREMIUM TIMES, you are helping to sustain a journalism of relevance and ensuring it remains free and available to all.


NEVER MISS A THING AGAIN! Subscribe to our newsletter

* indicates required


Now available on

  Premium Times Android mobile applicationPremium Times iOS mobile applicationPremium Times blackberry mobile applicationPremium Times windows mobile application

TEXT AD: This space is available for a Text_Ad.. Call Willie on +2347088095401 for more information

All rights reserved. This material and any other material on this platform may not be reproduced, published, broadcast, written or distributed in full or in part, without written permission from PREMIUM TIMES.