Messi targets record fourth Ballon d’Or award
Record-breaking Lionel Messi is poised to become the first player to
win four successive Ballon d'Or awards on Monday, sealing his status as
the greatest player of his generation. The 25-year-old is the
overwhelming favourite to see off the challenge of Barcelona teammate
Andres Iniesta and great Real Madrid rival Cristiano Ronaldo for the
It will crown another landmark year for the Argentine who is the top
scorer in La Liga this season with 25 goals having also broken Gerd
Mueller's 40-year record for the most goals in a calendar year.
He finished 2012 with an astonishing 91 goals in all competitions.
But Messi has insisted that his scoring records will mean nothing if
Barcelona do not go on to take La Liga title off Real or fail to win the
“It's nice to beat records but the win for the team is what is
important. My goals are to win titles with the team, the Spanish league,
Spanish Cup or Champions League is more important than any personal
records.” He remains just as modest when it comes to Monday's awards in
“If Iniesta wins, it will be well-deserved for all that he has done,
for the way he plays. Again, it will also be a prize for the dressing
room.” Messi and former French star, UEFA president Michel Platini, are
the only players to win three straight Ballon d'Or awards while Dutch
stars Johan Cruyff and Marco Van Basten have also won three accolades.
Barca coach Tito Vilanova has no doubt that Messi will be a deserving
“Leo's great quality is that he plays as if he still a child,” said