The soccer community is expecting Barcelona forward Lionel Messi’s streak of Ballon d’Or trophies to come to an end. Bayern Munich’s Franck Ribery and Real Madrid’s Cristiano Ronaldo are both believed to he ahead of Messi, who has struggled to stay on the pitch with injury issues. According to Messi’s teammate, defender Javier Mascherano, Messi doesn’t need the trophy.
“Leo does not need the Ballon d’Or to be happy, he has too many other reasons in his life to be happy,” Mascherano said. “Life is not just about football, there are many other things and Leo can enjoy them. But I hope he does win it as he is my teammate and my friend.”
Mascherano didn’t necessarily believe that Messi was right to lose ground in voting because of his injuries. Ronaldo has had a great start to the season and his performance against Sweden, with the extended voting period, have benefitted him.
“I could not see [Diego] Maradona so, I can only say that Messi is the best player I have seen in my life,” he said. “I am not going to speak about justice or injustice. But Leo is the best. With the Ballon d’Or, I believe you do not need to just take into account the last month or month-and-a-half. The prize is given for the whole year.”