Football France has made alterations to the rules of the Ballon d’Or as the publication has resumed sole charge of the elusive award.
On Friday, FIFA ended its six-year association with Football France over the FIFA Ballon d’Or. Since 1956, the prestigious award is handed out annually to the best footballer in the world. It was called the ‘World Player of the Year’ in 2009 before FIFA decided to take charge.
But now that their association has ended, a number of changes in the rules are on the cards (via Goal). According to One Football, FIFA is yet to announce its next move, which could amount to a reprisal of its own award, while the Ballon d’Or will once again be voted for exclusively by a select group of international journalists.
This rule could see the abolishment of international team coaches and club captains to be allowed to contribute in the voting procedure. Also, seven more participants will now be added to the shortlist of 23 players to make the total 30.
The winner and complete rankings of the shortlist will be revealed before the end of the calendar year while the awards are set to continue to be held in the month of January of the following year.
Barcelona forward Lionel Messi won the 2015 Ballon d’Or with Real Madrid attacker Cristiano finishing in a close second place. In fact, the La Liga duo have been sweeping the awards for the last eight years.
Former AC Milan midfielder Ricardo Kaka was the last player to win the award before the Messi-Ronaldo duopoly began. Now with both of them on the wrong side of thirty, it may be the time for another player to win the coveted prize.