Who will win the Ballon d’Or in 2023? Not Haaland as Messi is massive odds-on favourite

Sarah Winterburn
Erling Haaland and Lionel Messi are Ballon d'Or favourites.

After a fallow Ballon d’Or year for Lionel Messi in 2022, he is out in front of the 2023 betting…for a trophy he won in 2022.

This doesn’t seem quite right but the World Cup being in November/December 2022 means that the first chance to give Messi an eighth trophy will be October 2023.


1) Lionel Messi
He is odds-on favourite for what would surely be his eighth and final Ballon d’Or after he won the World Cup in 2022. It doesn’t seem right. Winning the Ballon as an Inter Miami player will be a flex.


2) Erling Haaland
The narrative dictates that Haaland and Mbappe will be locked in a decade-long battle for Ballons d’Or. Realistically, Haaland will know that his Norwegian-ness means that he probably needed to win the Champions League. He won it but it’s still unlikely to be enough in a year when he is likely to score the most goals too.


3) Jude Bellingham
It’s a very distant third but third nonetheless, clearly boosted by his summer move to Real Madrid and excellent start. He will surely win many, many individual gongs but this one comes too soon.


4) Rodri
Scored the winner in the Champions League final after being imperious in the Manchester City midfield. But Messi.


5) Harry Kane
Hard to claim the Ballon d’Or without actually, you know, winning anything.


6=) Kevin De Bruyne
Third last year but had a poor World Cup. At 31, he might quite reasonably think that he has been unlucky to be at his peak in the Messi years. Especially after he won a Treble.


6=) Kylian Mbappe
Five times he has finished in the top 10 but never even reached the podium. That’s unlikely to change this year with only domestic honours in the bag. No wonder he wants to leave PSG.