As the football season reaches the halfway stage, it's time for us to switch our attention to the Ballon d'Or, the 64th edition of which takes place in Paris on Monday. It's that time of the year when we witness the crowning of the world's best men's footballer.
Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi, the two superstars of the contemporary game, have dominated the awards since 2008 " the duo winning it five times each. Juventus star Ronaldo had won back-to-back awards in 2016 and 2017, before the two-horse race got a third entrant in Luka Modric who broke their deadlock with a stellar run in the 2018 FIFA World Cup to etch his name in the winners' list.
Is Messi a favourite to edge ahead of Ronaldo and take his tally to six this year? FC Barcelona, the club he has represented for 15 years now, certainly seem to think so.
"Monday sees the gala for the Ballon d'Or award take place in Paris, France. All eyes will be on BarÃ§a striker Leo Messi as the Argentine is in line for the prize given to the best player of the year for the sixth time in his career," read an official statement from the current LaLiga title holders.
Fans and football enthusiasts watch the live telecast of the awards ceremony on the Star Sports Select 1 /HD at 1.00 am IST on 3 December, 2019.