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Ronaldo worth backing to beat Messi to Ballon D’Or honours

| 08.11.2011

The shortlist has been drawn up for the Ballon D’Or and although there are 23 players with the chance of scooping the accolade, it is clearly a straight shoot-out between Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo.

Not since Michel Platini has any player won the Ballon D’Or for three years on the bounce, but that is the achievement that awaits Messi this season.

He is clearly expected to scoop the award as he is the 1/8 favourite to be handed the Ballon D’Or, with the final decision resting in the hands of the coaches and captains of international teams, as well as the leading journalists across Europe.

It cannot be argued that Messi has had another monumental, helping Barcelona to trophies including the Champions League and La Liga.

Messi’s personal accomplishments in this time should not be underestimated, as he scored 53 goals in 55 appearances and finished as the top scorer in the Champions League.

However, there are certainly grounds to argue that Ronaldo is more deserving off the award and offers the value in this particular market at 6/1.

Although not enjoying the same trophy haul as Messi, Ronaldo did better even his own high standards and potential those of his chief player of the year rival.

Ronaldo’s record-breaking 40 La Liga goals was the highest tally ever managed by a player in a domestic competition, while hew outdid Messi with 53 goals in 54 appearances in all competitions.

Both have also started the current season equally as impressively so the last few months cannot really come into the equation to seperate the pair.

It should be remembered that the selectors may have a soft spot for Real Madrid after giving Jose Mourinho the top coach award last year, despite the fact he had won fewer trophies than others.

Wayne Rooney is the only English player to make the shortlist at 33/1, although his poor discipline is likely to cost him a spot in the top three.

Robin van Persie and David Silva are conspicuous by their absence from the list, but further Premier League interest is provided by the likes of Sergio Aguero, Nani and Luis Suarez.

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Author

Craig Kemp

Craig has written for Ladbrokes since the 2010 World Cup, having previously gained a Media & Sports Journalism degree and contributed to publications including the Racing Post. His main areas of interest are horse racing and UFC, but he is also an avid X Factor gambler and likes nothing more than indulging in a spot of Hip Hop Karaoke.