For the past few years, Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo have dominated the world of football. For the last eight years, football’s biggest individual prize has been shared by these two beasts. The last player to win the Ballon d’Or other than CR7 or LM10 was Kaka. Now, let’s take a look at a list of players who could win the Ballon d’Or in the future. Here we go!
This list does not include the likes of Neymar, Suarez, Bale, Lewandowski and Hazard.
10. Gianluigi Donnarumma
The youngest player ever to start a Serie A match is tenth on our list. This young gun is just 16 years old and he’s already the no.1 keeper for one of the best teams in the world with rich history – AC MILAN! He’s already made his name among the best goalkeepers and is certainly talented. Praised by many, including his idol Gianluigi Buffon, he can win the Ballon d’Or in the next decade, if he maintains his form. “He seems to be pre-destined to become a great goalkeeper, and it all depends completely on him” stated 1982 FIFA World Cup winning Italian goalkeeper Dino Zoff. He holds the accolade “The New Buffon” and the future looks strong for this lad. Guys, what were you doing when you’re 16? School…… right?
9. Raphael Varane
The French centre-back, aged 22 is next on our list. Highly considered as the future of Real Madrid’s defence, this rising star can be the only defender who makes our list. If there’s some defender who could win the Ballon d’Or in the next decade, it is this man. He’s proved to be useful for Real Madrid and he has a bright future under another Real Madrid legend, Zidane. A few believe that Raphael Varane has the potential to be better than Real Madrid legend Fernando Hierro. Let’s see if that’s possible!
8. Kingsley Coman
At number 8, is the 2015 Golden Boy runner-up Kingsley Coman! At the age of nineteen, this teenage prodigy has played for three of the world’s best teams – PSG, Juventus and Bayern Munich. The Frenchman is still 19 and has many fruitful years ahead. He’s currently at Bayern Munich, on loan from Juventus. He has already made it to the French National Team and he has a lot of years to develop. His shooting ability is perfect, his speed is wonderful and he can terrorize any type of defence. He can play either as a forward or a winger. He has a huge potential and if he fills his potential, I’m sure that he’ll be nominated to win the prize anytime soon.
7. Anthony Martial
The 2015 Golden Boy winner is next on our list. If there’s someone who makes you watch Manchester United this season, it’s surely Martial. There were plenty of doubts regarding his transfer fee but he’s proved that he’s worthy in his first season. This boy has just terrorized many defences including the slowly falling Chelsea defence. He has the potential to become one of the greatest wingers, though his primary position is the centre-forward. Martial has brilliant skill and the only thing he lacks is experience. We’re yet to see the best of this boy and he surely will be a serious contender for the Ballon d’Or in the upcoming years.
6. Douglas Costa
At number six, is Douglas Costa. Douglas Costa, who started his senior football career at Gremio, Brazil has grown to become one of the best wingers of recent times. Douglas Costa has exceeded all our expectations after arriving from Shaktar Donetsk by keeping his place in one of the world’s strongest teams – Bayern Munich. Douglas Costa is known for his dribbling skills, speed, crossing ability and long-range shooting ability. Also, he’s one of the most dangerous wingers of recent times. He has proved that he’s one of the toughest players to defend and that’s just one of the reasons why I see him as a future Ballon d’Or winner. He’s 25 years old and he can still improve under Carlo Ancelotti next year.
5. Marco Verratti
A creative, hard-working, and technically gifted playmaker, Verratti began his career with Italian clubPescara in 2008, where he soon rose to prominence as one of the best young midfielders in Europe, helping the team to win the 2011-12 Serie B title along with Ciro Immobile and Lorenzo Insigne, and winning the 2012 Bravo Award. His passing ability, vision, and control, as well as his similar transition earned him comparisons with Italian legend and playmaker Andrea Pirlo. A quick, creative, agile, and technically gifted midfield playmaker, with notable dribbling skills and close ball control, Verratti is known for his confidence on the ball and ability to retain possession in tight spaces when under pressure. Recently, Barca legend Xavi quoted that Verratti and Dybala have Barcelona DNA in them and are destined for greatness. Initially regarded as one of the most talented young players of his generation, Verratti quickly developed into one of the best playmaking midfielders in the world. Aged only 23, he is another contender for the FIFA Ballon d’Or in the next decade.