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Ronaldo slumps to lowest Ballon d’Or ranking since 2005




Manchester United forward Cristiano Ronaldo has been ranked 20th in the Ballon d’Or, marking his lowest placing in 17 years.

The five-time winner of the prestigious award has endured a difficult start to the season at Old Trafford.

Ronaldo was demoted to the bench in five of the opening six games under new manager Erik ten Hag. The Portugal international was also on the sidelines for the entirety of United’s recent 6-3 collapse against Manchester City.

Since then, the 37-year-old has started in four successive games, with the Red Devils picking up three victories.

With regards to goals, Ronaldo has scored two so far this term. Last season, the Portuguese forward was United’s top scorer with 24 across all competitions.


Ronaldo’s hopes of winning another France Football crown look increasingly slim. With the player in his late 30s and his current side struggling to make much of an impact, his chance of a sixth title may be beyond him.

The five-time Champions League winner was linked with a move away from Old Trafford in the summer, though a transfer never materialised.

The player last finished 20th in the Ballon d’Or back in 2005. On that occasion, he finished level with current Sky Sports pundit Jamie Carragher.

That year, it was Ronaldinho who took the spoils, with Frank Lampard and Steven Gerrard making up the podium.

In recent times, Harry Kane has represented England’s best hope in the annual award. However, this year, the Tottenham forward finished 21st – two spots higher than the year prior.


Kane has been in good goalscoring form lately, bagging five goals in his last six outings for Spurs. The forward has found the back of the net on nine occasions in the Premier League this season. In fact, only Erling Haaland has scored more league goals than Kane this term.

The 29-year-old is also just three goals away from equalling Wayne Rooney on England’s all-time top scorer list.

Kane, who has 51 international goals to his name, could break the record at the 2022 World Cup in Qatar. The Tottenham man is expected to lead the line as Gareth Southgate’s men take on Iran, Wales and the United States in the group stage

Kunle Solaja is the author of landmark books on sports and journalism as well as being a multiple award-winning journalist and editor of long standing. He is easily Nigeria’s foremost soccer diarist and Africa's most capped FIFA World Cup journalist, having attended all FIFA World Cup finals from Italia ’90 to Qatar 2022. He was honoured at the Qatar 2022 World Cup by FIFA and AIPS.

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