- Ronaldo fails to receive nomination
- First time since 2003
- Currently on international duty with Portugal
WHAT HAPPENED? Ever since he first started tearing it up at Manchester United in 2003, CR7 has been a consistent name on the nominations list for football's most prestigious individual award. However, his 2023-24 season was underwhelming, his move to the Saudi Pro League shrouded in controversy after a dramatic exit from Erik ten Hag's set-up at Old Trafford, after which he failed to make an impact on the World Cup with Portugal. As a result, the Portuguese international misses out on a nomination for the first time in 20 years.
THE BIGGER PICTURE: It's the end of a remarkable stint at the very top of the European game for Ronaldo, who has won five Ballons d'Or (most recently in 2017) and been nominated 18 times. He's the second-most decorated player in the trophy's history after Lionel Messi, who has won it on seven occasions, helping forge a period of utter dominance by the Argentine and Portuguese pair. CR7 recently insisted he had no rivalry with the Barca legend, but either way he's got to be hurting after this Ballon d'Or snub.
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WHAT NEXT FOR RONALDO? Ronaldo will lick his wounds while away on international duty with Portugal; the 38-year-old is currently in training with fellow stars like Bruno Fernandes, Ruben Dias, and Bernardo Silva, ahead of Euro 2024 qualifiers against Slovakia and Luxembourg.