No great surprise that Lionel Messi won his fourth Ballon d'Or award in a row, ahead of Cristiano Ronaldo and Andres Iniesta.
After an outstanding individual year that saw the Barcelona man net an incredible 91 goals in 69 games to surpass Gerd Muller's 40-year-old record for goals in a calendar year, there was only going to be one winner.
There seems to be a clamor in some quarters for the award to be handed to another player, that somehow the ceremony has become a predictable event. But that was never realistic after Messi's 2012, and it is a testimony to the brilliance of the Argentine that people are now used to seeing him dribble the ball past multiple players before scoring.
Just because we have seen it all before, it is no less enthralling. No one comes close to Messi's mastery of a soccer ball and it was perhaps a surprise that he did not garner even more than 41.60% of the vote.
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