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Ballon d’Or 2012 – Messi, Iniesta and Ronaldo
FIFA has announced that Lionel Messi, Andres Iniesta and Cristiano Ronaldo are the Ballon d’Or Finalists.
The La Liga trio have already helped their respective teams qualify for the knock-out stages of the Champions League this season. With next week’s deciding matches just around the corner, be sure to start planning your Champions League betting before the big fixtures.
Ballon d’Or 2012
Lionel Messi, Ballon d’Or winner in 2009, 2010 and 2011, is the clear bookie’s favourite, after scoring 82 goals in 2012 he needs just three more to equal Gerd Muller’s record of 85 for club and country in a calendar year.
Andres Iniesta, without the goalscoring exploits of his Barcelona counterpart, had an excellent season. The 28-year old Spaniard was an essential part of Barcelona and Spain’s Euro 2012 winning side. Iniesta was named the player of the tournament following Spain’s triumph.
Ronaldo, Real Madrid’s competition to Messi in the Ballon d’Or, said in interview that he and the Argentine “are not friends“. They don’t need to be, their professional rivalry is built on the heavyweight battle for goalscoring supremacy. Arrogance vs Messi’s demure artistry. Cristiano Ronaldo, winner of the Ballon D’or in 2008, was the last player to win the trophy before Messi’s hat-trick of triumphs.
Ronaldo was a key influence on Real Madrid’s La Liga win in 2011/12 and will surely push Messi for the Ballon d’Or.