This is How Lionel Messi won his sixth Ballon d’Or award, overtaking Cristiano Ronaldo

Lionel Messi won a record sixth men's Ballon d'Or award at a ceremony in Paris on Monday evening, while USA World Cup superstar Megan Rapinoe claimed the women's prize.

The order of the final four is confirmed:

It's now announced that Virgil van Dijk came second, with Cristiano Ronaldo third and Sadio Mané fourth.

Cristiano drops down one from his 2018 finish of second, while Mané is up from 22nd and Van Dijk is straight in at second in his first ever appearance in the top 30.

Messi wins sixth Ballon d'Or - a new record

After teasing audience a little bit more, Drogba finally announces that Lionel Messi is, as we all thought he was going to be, the winner of the Men's Ballon d'Or for a record sixth time in his career. He goes one ahead of his long-time arch rival, Cristiano Ronaldo.

My, how Lionel has turned things round after only being the fifth-best player in the world last year.

The winners were:

2019 Men's Ballon d'Or: Lionel Messi
2019 Women's Ballon d'Or: Megan Rapinoe
2019 Kopa Trophy: Matthijs de Ligt
2019 Yachine Trophy: Alisson Becker

Here’s a bit of what Messi had to say on stage. He spoke for quite a while. “I know it isn’t easy,” said Didier Drogba by words of encouragement but the little man ought to be used to all this by now.

To the journalists and my colleagues with whom I win and lose, I remember my first Ballon D’Or in Paris, when I arrived with my brothers, now I pick up the sixth, and this was absolutely unthinkable. I never stopped dreaming and enjoying football like when I was a child. I hope I have more years to enjoy, although I am aware of how old I am, everything happens very quickly and I know that the moment of withdrawal (retirement) is approaching.

Van Dijk doesn’t look too disappointed and he explains why: “I had a great season, but sometimes you come up against players like him [Messi], who are a bit unnatural. Six Ballon d’Ors, you gotta respect greatness. I was close, but I lost out to someone better.”

Witt additional Reporting from AS and The Guardian

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