Follow live coverage of the 2019 ceremony from Paris today
LIONEL MESSI is the overwhelming favourite to secure this year’s Ballon d’Or.
The Argentine has won the prestigious gong five times before and goes up against Cristiano Ronaldo and Liverpool’s Virgil van Dijk.
Stars of the world game are in Paris for a lavish ceremony which will also see the presentation of the Kopa Trophy and Yashin Award.
Follow all the build-up, live rankings and red carpet action as it happens below…
- Start time: 7.30pm GMT
- Venue: Theatre du Chatelet, Paris
- TV/Live stream: No UK TV channel/France Football official website
Follow live coverage of the 2019 Ballon d’Or ceremony from Paris tonight. Lionel Messi is the favourite to take home the men’s award after a glittering season with Barcelona where he picked up yet another La Liga crown. Virgil van Dijk is his nearest challenger after playing a central role in Liverpool’s sixth European Cup win back in June. Don’t rule out Cristiano Ronaldo, however, who is also in contention after another goal-filled year.
Van Dijk is one of seven Liverpool players on the shortlist along with goalkeeper Alisson Becker, defender Trent Alexander-Arnold, midfielder Georginio Wijnaldum and forwards Mohamed Salah, Sadio Mane and Roberto Firmino. Premier League champions Manchester City have five players nominated including Sergio Aguero and Raheem Sterling with Tottenham duo Hugo Lloris and Son Heung-min also featuring. Arsenal’s Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang also makes the shortlist, as does former Chelsea star, now of Real Madrid, Eden Hazard.
Megan Rapinoe is favourite to claim the women’s award after starring in the United States’ World Cup win but Lucy Bronze of England is also in contention after another Champions League win with Lyon. Lionesses teammate Ellen White joins her on the list. Awards for the best Under-21 player and best goalkeeper will also be handed out for the 64th edition of this famous ceremony. We’ll have all the latest throughout the day right here