Why did Lionel Messi win the Ballon d'Or? The PSG star's 2021 analysed

Lionel Messi Ballon d'Or
(Image credit: Getty)

Lionel Messi is the 2021 Ballon d'Or winner - and while there are plenty who are happy to see the award back with the Argentinian, others have questioned what Leo has done to deserve it.

2021 wasn't a vintage year for the no.10 - at least not to the level of some of his other triumphs. In 2009, Barcelona won six trophies in a calendar year with Messi starring - while in 2015, Messi was the fulcrum of a glittering MSN front three, as Barca wrapped up another treble.

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Mark White
Content Editor

Mark White has been at on FourFourTwo since joining in January 2020, first as a staff writer before becoming content editor in 2023. An encyclopedia of football shirts and boots knowledge – both past and present – Mark has also represented FFT at both FA Cup and League Cup finals (though didn't receive a winners' medal on either occasion) and has written pieces for the mag ranging on subjects from Bobby Robson's season at Barcelona to Robinho's career. He has written cover features for the mag on Mikel Arteta and Martin Odegaard, and is assisted by his cat, Rosie, who has interned for the brand since lockdown.