Our Reporter, Abuja
The Argentine maestro, Lionel Messi, on Monday night at the Theatre du Chatelet in Paris, made history by incredibly winning his 8th Ballon d’Or title as the best male player on the planet.
Messi, who helped Argentina to win the the last World cup tournament in Qatar a year ago in a pulsating final game with holders France, held off a strong competition including first runner up, Erling Haarland (Norway and Manchester City) and Kylian Mbappe (France and PSG).
The 36-year-old little magician moved to Inter Miami playing in the American Major League Soccer (MLS) in the summer after being instrumental to Argentina’s victory in Qatar, scoring twice during the final, and during a penalty shoot-out, to help the team defeat 2018 winners, France.
When asked by Didier Drogba, who compered the ceremony if this Ballon d’Or was more special, considering it came from winning the 2022 World Cup, Messi said, “they’re all special.”
“I couldn’t imagine having the career I’ve had and everything I’ve achieved, the fortune I’ve had to be part of the best team in history.
“To win the Copa America and to get the World Cup after all those difficult moments in the national teams,” Messi added.
David Beckham, the owner of Inter Miami, handed the award to an elated Messi who attended the ceremony with his family.
Speaking on Messi, Beckham said: “It’s very special to say he’s a Miami player and he’s in our city. He’ll celebrate this with his team-mates and his family in his way.
“We’ll do our best to celebrate it in the Miami way. I’m sure we can do a good party.”
Meanwhile, Nigeria’s Victor Osimhen who helped the Italian side, Napoli, win the scudetto last term made history by placing eighth position in the list of world best players at the award.