Ballon d'Or awards ceremony - Lionel Messi Clinches Record Eighth Ballon d'Or
Lionel Messi, who now plays for Inter Miami CF in MLS, has won the Ballon d'Or for a record eighth time.
His achievement makes him the first player in Major League Soccer (MLS) to win this prestigious award.
Messi's win at the Ballon d'Or is largely due to his leadership in leading Argentina to World Cup victory last year.
Messi was presented the award in Paris by former Manchester United player and Inter Miami co-owner David Beckham.
Manchester City's brilliant striker Erling Haaland finished second in the Ballon d'Or voting. He also received the Gerd Muller Trophy, which is awarded to the best striker of the year.
Haaland's remarkable season included scoring 52 goals as Manchester City secured the treble in 2022–23.
In his acceptance speech, Messi expressed gratitude and disbelief at his successful career.
He acknowledged the impact of playing for top clubs and his luck in representing the best team in the world and history.