Ballon d’Or voting to go under sweeping changes

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Ballon d'Or voting to go under sweeping changes

The Ballon d’Or award will go through a number of sweeping changes ahead of the next ceremony, it was announced on Friday.

Lionel Messi’s record setting win at this year’s ceremony led to controversy after he picked up the award ahead of Bayern Munich’s Robert Lewandowski and Liverpool’s Mohamed Salah.

As a result, France Football’s editor-in-chief Pascal Ferre confirmed that there will be four new changes made for the award.

Firstly, the award period will fall in line with the main European season rather than entire calendar year as in previous years. This year’s award will only take into account the performances of footballers during the 2021-22 campaign, which ends with the Women’s Euro 2022 tournament in the summer. As a result, performances from the men’s 2022 World Cup in Qatar in November and December will only be taken into account for the 2023 award ceremony.

Secondly, former Chelsea and Ivory Coast star Didier Drogba has been added to the voting process along with the journalists involved in the Ballon d’Or voting. Drogba will be joined by Truong Anh Ngoc and Czech juror Karolina Hlavackova to compile a list of nominees.

Third change is that only the representatives of the first 100 countries in the FIFA rankings for the men’s award and the first 50 for the women’s will be permitted to vote as opposed to each nation getting a vote.

Lastly, the criteria for deciding the winner has been changed, as the award will not only consider a player’s individual performance, but also take into account collective performance, the “class” of a player and their fair play record. A player’s reputation and performances in the previous years will not be considered when voting for the winner.

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