Messi didn’t even make the podium.
Messi didn’t even make the podium.

Football’s stunning new world order

Kylian Mbappe was named winner of the Kopa Trophy for young player of the year while Luka Modric was crowned the world's best player at the Ballon d'Or ceremony in Paris on Tuesday (AEDT).

Incredibly, Barcelona superstar Lionel Messi was snubbed in the voting and did not even finish on the podium. Instead, he came in fifth, one spot ahead of Liverpool gun Mohamed Salah.

Messi's snub gave Ronaldo an opportunity to claim bragging rights over his biggest rival but Modric - who had a stellar World Cup for Croatia, leading his team to the final - took the top honour.

The creative central midfielder became the first player in history to be awarded the World Cup Golden Ball, UEFA Men's Player, FIFA Best Men's Player and Ballon d'Or in the same year.

Modric becomes the first winner of the prestigious award not named Ronaldo or Messi since Brazilian Kaka claimed the gong in 2007.

Modric beat several stars for the most coveted prize as the best player in the world including Ronaldo and France's Antoine Griezmann (Atletico Madrid).

Modric won the Champions League with Real Madrid before guiding Croatia to the World Cup final in July, where he was voted player of the tournament.

Modric, who has won the Champions League four times with Madrid, was fifth in Ballon d'Or polling last year.

Mbappe, who does not turn 20 until later this month, won his award after starring as France won the World Cup.

The new award - named after French former Ballon d'Or winner Raymond Kopa - was voted for by 33 living former winners of the main Ballon d'Or prize. Mbappe was also among the 30 nominees to win that award.

Mbappe - who was accompanied at the ceremony by his father and his younger brother Ethan - scored four goals at the World Cup, including one in the final as France beat Croatia 4-2 in Moscow.

In doing so he became just the second teenager to score in a World Cup final after Brazilian great Pele, who achieved the feat in 1958.

A French champion last season with PSG following a 180 million-euro ($204m) move from Monaco, Mbappe is the top scorer in Ligue 1 this season with 12 goals in 10 appearances.

He has scored 32 goals in 56 games for club and country in the calendar year.

But it was another snub that perplexed Australian football supporters, who were surprised when Matildas star Sam Kerr only came in fifth in the women's awards.

Norway's Ada Hegerberg claimed the top prize ahead of 14 other nominees.

 

 

RESULTS

1st: Luka Modric (CRO / Tottenham/Real Madrid)

2nd: Cristiano Ronaldo (POR / Real Madrid/Juventus)

3rd: Antoine Griezmann (FRA / Atletico Madrid)

4th Kylian Mbappe (FRA / PSG),

5th: Lionel Messi (ARG / Barcelona)

6th: Mohamed Salah (EGY / Liverpool)

7th: Raphael Varane (FRA / Real Madrid)

8th: Eden Hazard (BEL / Chelsea)

9th: Kevin De Bruyne (BEL / Manchester City)

10th: Harry Kane (ENG / Tottenham)

11th: N'Golo Kante (FRA / Chelsea)

12th: Neymar (BRA / PSG)

13th: Luis Suarez (URU / FC Barcelona)

14th: Thibaut Courtois (BEL / Real Madrid)

15th: Paul Pogba (FRA / Manchester United)

16th: Sergio Aguero (ARG / Manchester City)

17th: Gareth Bale (WAL / Real Madrid)

17th: Karim Benzema (FRA / Real Madrid)

19th: Roberto Firmino (BRA / Liverpool)

19th: Ivan Rakitic (CRO / FC Barcelona)

19th: Sergio Ramos (SPA / Real Madrid)

22nd: Edinson Cavani (URU / PSG)

22nd: Sadio Mane (SEN / Liverpool)

22nd: Marcelo (BRA / Real Madrid)

25th: Alisson Becker (BRA / Liverpool)

25th: Mario Mandzukic (CRO / Juventus)

25th: Jan Oblak (SLO / Atletico Madrid)

28th: Diego Godin (URU / Atletico Madrid)

29th: Isco (SPA / Real Madrid)

29th: Hugo Lloris (FRA / Tottenham).