The Ballon d’Or race – Top 10 favorites to take home the trophy

FIFA Ballon d'Or trophy

The Ballon d’Or gala will be later this year, but it’s never too early to consider a bet on the winner. Cristiano Ronaldo and Leo Messi have five trophies each, with the Portuguese winning four of the last five. It was Kaka in 2007 the last one who got the Ballon d’Or before the Ronaldo-Messi barrier, but it seems that 2018 is the year of another winner, not named Cristiano or Leo. Let’s take a look at the top 10 favorites, according to bookmakers, and see if your preferred player has the right odds to bet on.

10. Harry Kane (odds 41.00)

Harry Kane

Tottenham’s striker is England’s top asset at this moment. A born goalscorer, the 25-years old forward repeatedly carried his club team over the years. Wanted by bigger names in European football, including Real Madrid, Kane decided to stay and help the Spurs win a title. Unfortunately, Tottenham wasn’t capable of winning any trophy last season and Kane even missed out on a personal achievement, the Premier League goalscorer title, accounted by Mo Salah. However, Tottenham’s no. 10 won the Golden Boot in Russia after scoring six goals in the tournament. Keep in mind that three came from penalties.


  • Won the Golden Boot at the World Cup


  • Missed every trophy with his club team
  • England came 4th at the World Cup
  • Was behind Mo Salah in the Premier League goalscorer race

9. Neymar (odds 34.00)


The Brazilian is a superstar and helped his team last season win three domestic trophies. But his injury cost the PSG the club’s main goal – go deep in the Champions League. Add the fact that Brazil was eliminated early at the World Cup in Russia and that he was one of the most unpopular figures at the World Cup due to his excessive diving, and see why Neymar has basically no chance of even getting top 3.


  • PSG won three domestic trophies
  • Is a superstar


  • Brazil was eliminated in the quarter-finals of the World Cup
  • Bad behavior at the tournament in Russia
  • PSG dropped out in the ⅛ of the Champions League

8. Kevin de Bruyne (odds 34.00)

Kevin De Bruyne

Kevin de Bruyne had an excellent season with Manchester City, winning the Premier League title and being considered the second most valuable player of the campaign, after Mo Salah. The Belgian helped his club team with 8 goals and 16 assists, and also got third place at the World Cup with his country.

However, the fact that Manchester City once again disappointed in the Champions League may cost de Bruyne a good chance in the Ballon d’Or race.


  • Belgium got 3rd place at the World Cup
  • Manchester City won the Premier League title
  • Made the most assists last season in the Premier League


  • Voted second best player in the Premier League last season, after Mo Salah
  • Manchester City got eliminated in the quarter-finals of the Champions League
  • Is out injured since the beginning of this season

7. Mohamed Salah (odds 26.00)

Mohamed Salah

Salah had the best campaign of his life, scoring 32 goals for Liverpool in the Premier League, winning the goalscorer title. Unfortunately for him and his team, the Reds were unable to stop City getting another title and the run for the PL trophy continues for Liverpool. An injury in the Champions League final made the Egyptian unable to help his team pass Real Madrid and Liverpool lost the final act, 1-3. Furthermore, that injury cost Salah the first game of the World Cup and although he played the next two matches, he couldn’t do anything major to aid his country get out of the group stage.


  • Premier League goalscorer
  • Voted Premier League best player of the season
  • Played a Champions League final with Liverpool


  • Got injured in the Champions League final
  • Liverpool won no trophy last season
  • Egypt went home after the group stage at the World Cup

6. Lionel Messi (odds 21.00)

Lionel Messi

How can Messi, a five-time winner of Ballon d’Or, have such enormous odds? Well, the Argentinian was invisible during Barcelona’s early exit in the Champions League last season. And although Barca won LaLiga and Messi scored 34 goals, we can’t actually say that he had a great campaign, considering the team’s failure in the Champions League. At the World Cup in Russia, Leo was unable to lead his country further than the ⅛ phase of the tournament.


  • LaLiga winner with Barcelona
  • LaLiga goalscorer with 34 goals
  • Five-time Ballon d’Or winner
  • A superstar


  • Barcelona’s elimination in the Champions League quarter-finals
  • Argentina’s failure at the World Cup

5. Raphael Varane ( odds 17.00)

Raphael Varane

The 25-years old defender may be a surprise entry on our list, but let’s take a look at his achievements. Last season, he won the Champions League with Real Madrid and was a starter for his country in Russia. Two big trophies for Varane and the “blanco” should be a favorite. However, we shouldn’t forget that strikers are the ones who receive all the glory. Only Fabio Cannavaro, in 2006, was able to take home the Ballon d’Or as a defender.


  • Won the Champions League with Real Madrid
  • World Cup winner with France
  • Included in the FIFPro World XI


  • Real Madrid missed the LaLiga title
  • Only one defender previously won the Ballon d’Or

4. Antoine Griezmann (odds 13.00)

Antoine Griezmann

The Frenchman decided just before the World Cup to once again tie the knot with Atletico Madrid. Griezmann was the main objective for Barcelona this summer, yet the 27-years decided to stay in Madrid. He helped his club team win the Europa League trophy and became a World Cup champion with France. Although he sees himself at the same level with Messi and Ronaldo, he doesn’t quite have that spark to be a mega superstar.


  • Europa League winner with Atletico Madrid
  • World Cup champion with France
  • An intelligent and charismatic player
  • Third place in the Ballon d’Or 2016 competition


  • Not on the same level with Messi and Ronaldo
  • Second place with Atletico Madrid in LaLiga

3. Kylian Mbappe (odds 8.00)

Kylian Mbappe

Just 19-years old, Mbappe has the entire world at his feet. He won three domestic trophies with PSG last season and played an important part in France’s winning journey at the World Cup. He even scored in the final. Kylian put some impressive numbers in the 2017/2018, but still has room to grow.


  • World Cup winner with France
  • Scored in the final against Croatia
  • Won three trophies with PSG


  • Scored just 13 goals in Ligue 1 last season
  • Missed the Champions League objective with PSG
  • His age

2. Cristiano Ronaldo (odds 2.75)

Cristiano Ronaldo

CR7 won four of the last five Ballon d’Or trophies and could be in line for his sixth overall. Cristiano won the Champions League with Real Madrid and was the competition’s goalscorer, with 15 goals. But the Portuguese couldn’t help his country overcome the ⅛ phase at the World Cup in Russia. His fame and the fact that he’s already 33-years old could represent a plus in the competition for this year’s Ballon d’Or.


  • Won the Champions League with Real Madrid
  • Was the CL”s goalscorer, with 15 goals
  • Won the Ballon d’Or five times before
  • Still a superstar, at 33-years of age


  • Missed the LaLiga with Real Madrid
  • Portugal was eliminated in the ⅛ of the World Cup

1. Luka Modric (odds 1.33)

Luka Modric

Modric won the same trophy as Cristiano, the Champions League, but did better at the World Cup, where Croatia played the final. The 33-years old midfielder was instrumental for both his club and his country. Besides, Luka has an emotional life story that could totally count in the decision for the Ballon d’Or.


  • Won the Champions League with Real Madrid
  • Played the World Cup final with Croatia
  • Amazing life story
  • Won The Best FIFA Football Awards