Modrić, Rakitić, and Mandžukić Nominated for Ballon d’Or!

Daniela Rogulj

An incredible recognition for Croatian football as three World Cup stars make the shortlist of nominees for the Ballon d’Or. 

The elections for the best footballers in the world are not quite over, and though Croatia captain and Real Madrid midfielder Luka Modrić has been named the best in the world and Europe by FIFA and UEFA, there is yet another glamorous award on the agenda – the Ballon d’Or, or the ‘Golden Ball’, reports on October 8, 2018. 

Namely, the Ballon d’Or is awarded by renowned football magazine France Football, which, after several years of cooperation with FIFA, has been an independent award again since 2016. It is the oldest football award (since 1956) and thought to be the most prestigious football award in the world.

On Monday, France Football published a shortlist of the 30 nominees up for the award in the 2018 calendar year. While we have to wait for the winner to be announced at a ceremony on December 3, we can find comfort in knowing that three Croatians have been nominated!

Luka Modrić is one of the favorites to win the prize but will have great competition in Cristiano Ronaldo and World Cup champion Antoine Griezmann. Both publicly showed their dissatisfaction after Modrić was declared the best by UEFA and FIFA – and the French were particularly peeved because, in both elections, not a single World Cup winner was among the three nominated.

Mario Mandžukić and Ivan Rakitić are also both up for the prize, though their chances are quite slim. Recall, in addition to the World Cup final, both won the double crown in Italy and Spain.

In about a month, France Football will announce a shortened list of candidates chosen by a jury of renowned journalists from all over the world.


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