Cristiano Ronaldo now big favourite to win historic SIXTH Ballon d’Or after Champions League final win while Mohamed Salah sees his hopes fade massively after shoulder injury
- Cristiano Ronaldo is now the big favourite to win his sixth Ballon d’Or award
- He is currently level with fierce rival Lionel Messi – both have won it five times
- Salah was unable to stake his claim after leaving the pitch in tears on 30 minutes
- He sprained his shoulder joint after an awkward tangle with Sergio Ramos
- No player since Kaka in 2007 has beaten Ronaldo or Messi to the accolade
Cristiano Ronaldo is now the overwhelming favourite to win the 2018 Ballon d’Or after lifting his fifth Champions League title on Saturday.
Despite playing a peripheral role in the 3-1 win over Liverpool, a night where attacking team-mate Gareth Bale stole the headlines, Ronaldo’s odds were trimmed from 7/4 to 5/4.
But the disappointing evening from a Liverpool perspective was compounded as Mohamed Salah, who has enjoyed the best season of his career having scored 44 goals, slipped to third in the odds-race after his final was cut short on 30 minutes.
Cristiano Ronaldo is now the big favourite to win an historic sixth Ballon d’Or award this year
The Real Madrid icon is currently tied with Barcelona rival Lionel Messi having won five awards
Despite playing a peripheral role in the final success, Ronaldo has strengthened his chances
Mohamed Salah was unable to stake his claim after leaving the final in tears due to an injury
The final in Kiev was billed as Ronaldo vs Salah but both failed to hit the heights expected with team-mates generating a greater impact on the outcome.
Ronaldo looked increasingly unlikely to be anywhere near the accolade after a poor domestic campaign left Madrid’s season in the balance.
But a resurgence in the second half of the season saw Ronaldo help drive Zinedine Zidane’s side to the final and he now looks to be in firm control ahead of the World Cup.
Injury plagued Salah’s final and as he posed in a sling, he saw his Ballon d’Or odds wane
Meanwhile, it was all smiles for Ronaldo as he knew he took a big step closer to a sixth award
Ronaldo is looking to enter a league in his own by passing Lionel Messi’s five Ballon d’Or titles
Salah has been in devastating form for Liverpool this season and cleaned up in England with the end of season awards, lifting the PFA Player of the Year award and the Football Writers’ Footballer of the Year award.
No player since Kaka in 2007 has broken the Ronaldo-Lionel Messi duopoly with Salah providing the biggest threat in 11 years.
But having been 2/1 before kick-off in Kiev, narrowly behind Ronaldo, the Egyptian is now at 7/2 and third favourite behind Ronaldo and Messi.