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Ballon d’Or

Ronaldo Beats Messi To FIFA Best Men's Player Of The Year

Real Madrid superstar Cristiano Ronaldo has beaten longstanding rival Lionel Messi to the prestigious FIFA Best Men's Player award, closing the gap on the Argentine.

Read: FIFA Announce 2016 World Team Of The Year

The 31-year-old, who won the 2016 Ballon d'Or award in December, was the favourite to lift the prestigious individual trophy.

France Football and FIFA handed out the FIFA Ballon d'Or between 2010 and 2015, but split up before the 2016 awards. Ronaldo has now lifted the FIFA award for the fourth time, just one less than record holder Messi.

In 2008, he won the FIFA World Footballer of the Year – the predecessor of the FIFA Best Men's Player of the Year award – as well as France Football's Ballon d'Or.

In addition, he also lifted the 2013 and 2014 FIFA Ballons d'Or. Messi meanwhile, claimed the FIFA World Footballer of the Year in 2009, the Ballon d'Or every year between 2010 and 2012, as well as the 2015 version.

The Portuguese can look back at arguably the best year of his career after winning the UEFA Champions League title, the UEFA Super Cup as well as the FIFA Club World Cup with Los Blancos, and also captaining Portugal to their first ever UEFA European Championship title.

He also netted 55 goals in 57 appearances for club and country, while Messi found the back of the net on 59 occasions in his 62 games for Argentina and Barcelona.

However, he could only lift the La Liga and Copa del Rey titles, and lost the Copa America final to Chile.

Soccer Laduma's Joe Crann will be at The Best FIFA Football Awards in Zurich on Monday, courtesy of Spree.co.za.

Antoine Griezmann was the third nominee after leading Atletico Madrid to the UEFA Champions League final and France to the Euro 2016 final, albeit losing both games. The Frenchman netted 36 goals for club and country in 2016, and was also named Player of the Tournament at the Euros.

Do you think Ronaldo deservedly won the biggest individual award in world football? Have your say in the comments section below.

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