When questioned about the possibility of winning his 9th Golden Ball award, Lionel Messi responded with a humble reply.
In a grand event held in Paris, Messi was honored with his eighth Ballon d’Or for leading his team to victory in the World Cup hosted in Qatar. Being the second oldest winner of the award, he outperformed younger contenders including Erling Haaland and Kylian Mbappe. This achievement adds another feather to the cap of the Inter Miami captain’s glorious career.
When the next Ballon d’Or is given out, Messi will have reached the age of 37. Being aware of his advancing age, the iconic Barcelona player assumes that this will be the final occasion he receives this prestigious award.
During a recent chat with L’Equipe, Messi shared that he has stopped dreaming about winning his 9th Ballon d’Or. He stated that the accolade is no longer his top priority, especially since he has already achieved everything in his career. According to him, winning his 8th Golden Ball was a major accomplishment. He also believes that this will be his last Ballon d’Or. Overall, he seems content with his achievements and is not overly focused on winning more awards.
In 2009, Messi was honored with his first Ballon d’Or, and he went on to win three more successive awards. Over the years, he has added to his trophy cabinet with titles in 2015, 2019, 2021, and 2023. Interestingly, his previous Golden Ball is still retained at Barcelona’s museum. In a recent interview, Messi shared his thoughts on the future of the prestigious award and named several players whom he believes will compete for it. According to Messi, young talents like Haaland, Mbappe, Vinicius, and many others will make for an exciting competition in the years to come. He also mentioned Lamine Yamal as a player who could play a significant role in the future, and he expects new, exceptional players to emerge and contend for the prize.