6. 1969 – 4 points
Gianni Rivera (83) and Luigi Riva (79)
Gianni Rivera was an interesting candidate to have won the Ballon d’Or. He was one of the most technically gifted offensive midfielders who had the skills, vision, grace and also an eye for goal. However, he had a poor work rate and rarely contributed to the defence. 1969 was not one of his better years but he helped Milan achieve European glory that year.
Luigi Riva was one of the finest strikers from Italy. Having shifted from a winger to a striker’s position, he was the complete package in that position. His ability to score with either foot, his dribbling, volleying & set-piece abilities made him what he was. His 35 goals in 42 games for Italy is an astonishing return. 1969 was one of his best years with Calgiri.