The French magazine France Football announced that the 2020 award is cancelled. Due to the changes in football rules and the prolonged stoppage this year, the legitimacy of the award given at the end of the year to the best player in the world is affected.
FOOTBALL WITHOUT A BEST PLAYER IN THE WORLD IN 2020?
The traditional prize given by the French magazine France Football is officially cancelled on the 2020 season. The Ballon D’Or usually awarded to either Cristiano Ronaldo or Lionel Messi during the past decade won’t have the Portuguese nor the Argentinian fighting for it on the 2020 edition.
The magazine informed that they will not give the award this year, due to what happened in the world on the 2020 season.
The long paralysation that happened in the world of football, from March to May, and the fact that some leagues didn’t even return, combined with the changes in the rules of football and the format of some competitions ended up affecting the legitimacy of the choice.
The Ballon D’Or is an important achievement every season, where the best player in the world is selected by the magazine, and it became one of the biggest individual honours of world football.
The magazine, however, explained on some points why we will not see the award in 2020. According to the organizers, only 2 months (January and February) had “normal” football in 2020 and during the rest of the year we have had paralysations, leagues being shut down, modified formats, matches behind closed doors, all aspects that affect the selection of the player.
CHAMPIONS LEAGUE MIGHT HAVE BEEN ONE OF THE BIG REASONS…
It’s very clear that the award of France Football, the Ballon D’Or, and the FIFA award, “The Best” are totally skewed towards being awarded to the players who make great campaigns on the best competitions.
The World Cup, every 4 years, and the UEFA Champions League, annually, are the competitions that matter the most to decide who is the best player in the world.
In 2018, Luka Modric was a controversial winner of the best player in the world award, based on the fact he was able to take Croatia to a World Cup final. Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo are fighting particularly, year after year, for the details who make them be superior over the other. One of those “details” is the Champions League.
The fact that the biggest club competition was modified to a single-leg knockout stage, on a single country, from the quarter finals was determinant for France Football to cancel the Ballon D’Or award. Without a “fair” race, where each club plays at home and plays in the same conditions, the analysis of the magazine had to change.
In 1 match everything can happen and the “best” might not show up. The club of the best player might get eliminated, due to the unpredictability that the competition will now have from now on. It would be a risk having to choose between players who reached the final if they weren’t amongst the top contenders for the magazine.
The decision was made in order to avoid constraints or having to give it to someone that was not so acclaimed worldwide. It is not as much about legitimacy, but more about lack of glamour for the award at the end of the year. The award will not be given for the first time since 1956.
FIFA’S “THE BEST” MIGHT STILL BE AWARDED
In the start of the month of May, where everything was still unknown in the world of football, FIFA had already talked about their prize of best player in the world.
At the time, the entity cancelled the “The Best” award ceremony, that was scheduled for September. Besides that, the award ceremony would count with the Puskas award, that is given to the best goal of the season.
Although the ceremony can definitely be cancelled, FIFA is still open to at least keep the voting and the award attribution to the best in the world. Nobody knows if these conditions will outshine the award of best player of the season, but it will happen.
In May, FIFA, although they were saying that the trophy would be handed out, didn’t define if the award would be about the 2019/2020 season or if it would remain open until 2021.
With the cancellation of the Ballon D’Or by France Football, FIFA ends up being on a complicated situation, since if they cancel their award as well, they will leave a year open in history, without acknowledging the efforts of their players.
Thea ward ceremony will probably be officially cancelled. But the decision of cancelling “The Best” is now harder. It will not have the traditional glamour of the award ceremonies, but the award is still legitimate.
There is no lack of legitimacy, besides the desire of making something fancy. But although this isn’t a normal year, there will be a best player in the world, because the competitions continue in full steam now, and there are players who are worthy of being in the race for this award.