“He Did Not Shine in the World Cup” – Al Nassr’s Cristiano Ronaldo’s Absence From Ballon d’Or Justified by France Football Chief

Published 10/30/2023, 3:46 AM EDT

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As this year’s Ballon d’Or ceremony looms closer, the soccer world is abuzz with anticipation. With heavyweights like Lionel Messi, Erling Haaland, and Kylian Mbappe vying for the coveted accolade, the interest among fans is palpable. However, the absence of Portuguese soccer legend Cristiano Ronaldo from the nominees has raised eyebrows. In an interview ahead of the award ceremony, France Football chief justified the omission of Ronaldo from the Ballon d’Or.

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Cristiano Ronaldo, a 5x-Ballon d’Or winner and Portugal’s record goal scorer is conspicuously missing from the list of 30 nominees for the first time in nearly two decades. Let’s delve deeper and know what the ‘France Football’ chief has to say on this affair.

France Football chief justifies Cristiano Ronaldo’s exclusion

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Ahead of the prestigious ceremony in Paris, France Football’s editor-in-chief Vincent Garcia spoke about Ronaldo’s surprise exclusion from the nominees list. In an interview with the German portal ‘TZ,’ Garcia shed light on why the legendary Portuguese forward was not even considered for the prestigious accolade. The France Football chief pointed to two primary reasons for this omission. First, he argued that Cristiano Ronaldo failed to shine at the recent World Cup, and second, he plays in a league with limited visibility.

Garcia stated, “Ronaldo’s absence was not, at all, a topic of discussion among the committee,” Garcia said. “He did not shine at the World Cup and plays in a league that has limited visibility. Still, he continues to be a great player.” This revelation from the France football chief has left many fans and pundits wondering and sparked fiery discussions.

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During the World Cup in Qatar, Ronaldo netted just a single goal from the penalty spot for Portugal. In contrast, Argentina’s Lionel Messi led his team to victory and was crowned the tournament’s best player after scoring seven goals. It is quite evident that Ronaldo’s performance at the World Cup was perhaps not at the level expected of him, but the question looms: does a single tournament define a soccer player’s overall greatness?

Garcia also stated that Cristiano Ronaldo plays in a league with limited visibility. Playing for Al Nassr in Saudi Arabia, Ronaldo’s league visibility is undoubtedly lower than when he was at illustrious European clubs like Manchester United, Real Madrid, and Juventus. The Saudi Professional League may not have the global exposure of Europe’s top leagues, but it’s essential to acknowledge that Ronaldo’s presence there has attracted significant attention and investment.

Is the Ballon d’Or legitimate?

The Ballon d’Or is considered to be the most prestigious individual award in soccer. However, the award has been criticized in recent years for its lack of transparency and its tendency to favor players who play for European clubs. Ronaldo’s omission from the nominees has further fueled the debate about the legitimacy of the award. Vincent Garcia’s explanation, centered on the World Cup performance and league visibility, provides valuable insights into the criteria used to determine the list of candidates.

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While Cristiano Ronaldo’s legacy in the soccer world is undeniable, it seems that even the greatest players are evaluated based on specific criteria for the Ballon d’Or award. Fans will be eagerly waiting to witness the next winner of the Ballon d’Or on Monday, Oct. 30th.

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Written by:

Sahil Sharma

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Sahil Sharma is a soccer writer at EssentiallySports. He's been a fan since childhood, but his love for the sport truly took off when Real Madrid won their record 10th UEFA Champions League title in 2014. That famous La Decima triumph turned him into a hardcore Madridista.
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Edited by:

Sreeda U M

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