World impact of Messi’s Ballon d’Or
Leo Messi winning the Ballon d’Or has made most of the headlines in Spain, but the story was also reported elsewhere in the world, especially in his home continent of South America.
If there is any one person that is dominating the news right now, then his name is Leo Messi. The
FIFA Ballon d’Or 2010 is in the headlines in Catalonia, Spain and the rest of the world.
Catalan sports dailies, ‘Sport’, ‘El Mundo Deportivo’ and ‘El 9
Esportiu’ have all mentioned not just Leo Messi but also the way the top three were all Barça
players. ‘Sport’ speaks of ‘Gold for Messi. Glory for Barça’, while
‘Mundo Deportivo’ leads with ‘Messi! Leo wins second Ballon d’Or aged 23
anys’ and ‘El 9 Esportiu’ proclaims that ‘Messi brings it back’.
Other papers expressed their shock that neither Iniesta nor Xavi collected the award after
all they did at the World Cup in South Africa. ‘Marca’ bemoans ‘Two giants and
one anti-Spanish’ with pictures of Messi and Mourinho. The paper was annoyed that FIFA and
Sepp Blatter failed to recognise any of Xavi, Iniesta or Del Bosque. ‘As’ was of a
similar mind, and felt ‘Spain is seething’ that Messi was picked ahead of Iniesta and
Despite the important announcement of the ETA ceasefire, Leo Messi and his prize
also got plenty of coverage in the national broadsheets. ‘El Periódico de Catalunya’,
‘La Vanguardia’ and ‘Ara’ all included front page stories and extensive
coverage of the events in Zurich.
‘El País’, ‘El Mundo’, ‘Público’ and ‘ABC’
also reported on Messi’s award, and the general suggestion was that the Argentine star is up
there with Di Stefano, Pelé, Cruyff and Maradona.
King of Argentina
naturally there was joy in Messi’s home country. In Argentina, ‘Olé’ filled the
front page with the news, under the headline ‘The secret of his golds’.
‘Clarín’ and ‘La Nación’ also had plenty to say about the award.
But other Latin American countries also hailed yet another success for the Bará striker,
including Brazilian daily O’Globo.
Back in Europe, the FIFA party was also a major story. French paper
‘L’Équipe’, for instance, titled its report with the play on words ‘Messi?
But Italian sports paper ‘Gazzetta dello Sport’ was less impressed with the
decision, and felt it was a “Ballon d’Or for a disappointing year”, while
‘Corriere dello Sport’ also considered it surprising that Messi was chosen.