As some of the biggest prizes in international have now been handed out this summer, attention turns to the best odds on the Ballon d’Or 2021 winner. The competition to be crowned the planet’s greatest player is always fierce, and this year is no different.
Particularly as the duopoly on the best odds on the Ballon d’Or held by Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi has now been broken. And not to mention the fact that the award was cancelled in 2020 due to the pandemic, despite the vast majority of domestic and continental competitions being completed.
As such, Messi remains the occupier of the throne after his win in 2019. In deposing previous incumbent Luka Modric, Messi won a record sixth Ballon d’Or, moving one ahead of Ronaldo on five. Those two greats have won 11 of the last 12 Ballons d’Or between these, and they’re both in the running once again.
Messi is the 1/2 favourite in the best odds on the Ballon d’Or, having finally lifted a trophy with Argentina. His success and inspired performances in the Copa America – despite becoming a free agent at the end of June – elevate Messi to his odds-on status, even though his club Barcelona finished third in La Liga and lost in the last 16 of the Champions League. They did win the Copa del Rey, however.
Ronaldo also tasted success in domestic cup competition, as Juventus recovered from the disappointment of losing the Scudetto to Inter and finishing fourth in Serie A to win the Coppa Italia. The Portuguese superstar was excellent for his country at Euro 2020, scoring five times in just four games to claim the Golden Boot. Ronaldo is 8/1 as part of the best odds on the Ballon d’Or this year.
Bayern Munich striker Robert Lewandowski is sandwiched between those two at 7/1 with William Hill. The Pole was in line to win last year’s cancelled Ballon d’Or after netting a spectacular 55 goals in 47 games for Bayern, replicating his stunning form with 48 goals in just 40 games this term. He scored three goals for Poland in the group stage of Euro 2020, but even that wasn’t enough for them to reach the knockout rounds.
Best odds on the Ballon d’Or
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A man who did play in the knockout rounds at the Euros, and indeed went all the way in the competition, was Italian midfielder Jorginho. The playmaker has had a wonderful season for club and country, lifting the Champions League with Chelsea before beating England in the final of Euro 2020 with Italy. The clamour to see Jorginho receive one of football’s highest honours is building and he is 20/1 in the best odds on the Ballon d’Or.
Another star of Euro 2020 was England’s Raheem Sterling, who scored three goals and put in some fantastic performances as Gareth Southgate’s Three Lions finished as runners-up. However, the Manchester City man failed to find the back of the net in the knockout rounds and he’s more of a long shot than Jorginho despite the odds of 16/1.
Elsewhere in the best odds on the Ballon d’Or 2021, England captain Harry Kane is 9/1, although even that looks like a stretch despite the Tottenham striker’s four goals in the Euros. Fellow Premier League stars N’Golo Kante and Kevin De Bruyne are both 16/1 in this market, while Kylian Mbappe, Ciro Immobile and Romelu Lukaku are all 33/1.
Fancy a real long shot? Manchester United left-back Luke Shaw is out at 90/1, after becoming the centre of attention for all the right reasons through his performances this summer. The recognition from Brazil legend Roberto Carlos and begrudging respect from former manager Jose Mourinho probably won’t be enough to lift Shaw quite into the upper-echelons of the global elite, however.