Ballon d’Or 2023: Who are the favourites for the top awards this year?

Once again the Ballon d’Or has rolled around, with Spanish football looking to have a heavy presence on the podium. For the last 23 years, the men’s Ballon d’Or winner has spent at least part of their year in Spanish football, dating back to Kaka in 2007, when he won it for Milan. Andriy Shevchenko was the last player to win it that has never featured for Real Madrid or Barcelona, going back nearly two decades to 2004. But who are the favourites for this year’s competition?

That first streak looks set to be snapped, with Lionel Messi the hot favourite to take home the award, after he inspired Argentina to their first World Cup in 36 years. Erling Haaland of Manchester City is believed to be his closest competition, after winning the Premier League and the Champions League.

There are a number of La Liga players on the 30-man shortlist too, with Barcelona’s Robert Lewandowski and Ilkay Gundogan there. Real Madrid are represented by Luka Modric, Jude Bellingham, Vinicius Junior and Karim Benzema, who moved to Al Ittihad in July.

Atletico Madrid star Antoine Griezmann has a strong case to be the best La Liga player over the last 12 months, and he too is in the longlist, while former Sevilla goalkeeper Yassine Bounou also made it due to his role in their Europa League win, and Morocco’s World Cup run to the semi-finals.

The women’s Ballon d’Or list featuring several Spanish World Cup winners, and Relevo say that Barcelona midfielder Aitana Bonmati is the strongest contender. Olga Carmona, Alba Redondo and Salma Paralluelo all won with Spain, while Barcelona’s Champions League winners Fridolina Rolfo, Asisat Oshoala, Patri Guijarro and Mapi Leon are also there.

In terms of the Kopa award, given to the best young player, Bellingham didn’t even really need his outstanding start to this season to win it, but it looks as if it will remove all doubt. He is set to pip Gavi, Pedri, Alejandro Balde and Eduardo Camavinga, as well as former La Masia product Xavi Simons.

Thibaut Courtois is due to be on the shortlist for the Lev Yashin award, given to the best goalkeeper, joined by Marc-Andre ter Stegenn and ‘Bono’ in terms of La Liga representation. Yet Argentina goalkeeper Emiliano Martinez is set to take home the award, after he came up trumps in the World Cup final against France.

The ceremony is due to take place at 21:00 CEST at the Theatre du Chatelet in Paris.

Tags Aitana Bonmati Atletico Madrid Ballon d'Or Barcelona Emiliano Martinez Jude Bellingham Lionel Messi Real Madrid Sevilla


  1. Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola says France Football should award two Ballon d’or 2023 as both Lionel Messi and Erling Haaland deserve to win the award

  2. Messi cemented his place as arguably the greatest of all time when Argentina won the World Cup in Qatar in December 2022, with Messi putting in several Man of the Match performances throughout the competition.

Comments are closed

La Liga - Club News