Messi is 29 years old and two years younger than Ronaldo who is 31 and. Many predict that within four years, we would have a first player win the Ballon D’or from the duo.For the sake of this article we are looking at players who are 25 years and below so sorry Gareth Bale, you miss out.
Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo have ruled the FIFA Ballon D’or awards for the past eight years and its not easy seeing anyone take over from them soon.
Here are six players who can stop the rule of Ronaldo and Messi.
Came third in the 2015 FIFA Ballon D’or awards and has continued to go strong. Expected to come third again this year after leading Brazil to gold at the Rio Olympics.
2. Eden Hazard
His might have faded in the 2015/2016 season after leading Chelsea to the Premier League title the season before but the 25 year old has been making up for some lost time with some sensational performances this season.
Many thought he would be the one to usurp Messi and Ronaldo until his dip in form.
3. Renato Sanches
Winner of the 2016 Golden Boy award. Sanches might be taking a while to settle at Bayern but he has already shown glimpses of his quality which must not be understated.
The 19-year-old is expected to be a leading player for the next decade in football.
4. Paul Pogba
Forget his form this season for Manchester United and you see the great talent that is Paul Pogba. There was a reason why United paid a world record fee for the Frenchman who was named in the FIFA pro XI earlier this year.
If Mourinho can get him to work in his best position, he could win the Ballon D’or without a fuss.
5. Paulo Dybala
Already seen in Argentina as the natural successor to Lionel Messi. Scored 19 goals in 34 appearances for Juventus last season and has carried his rich form to the new season.
Pace, eye for a pass and a criminally good dribbling ability are some of the skill set he possess.
6. Antoine Griezmann
Was named the best player at Euro 2016 ahead of Cristiano Ronaldo and also best player in La Liga ahead of Messi and Ronaldo. Having overtaken the duo in La Liga and Ronaldo on the continent, he should conquer the world next.
* Special mention: Ousmame Dembele of Dortmund (19-years-old Frenchman)
Which of them do you think will win the Ballon D’or and FIFA World Player of the Year when the reign of Messi and Ronaldo is over?