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Ballon d'Or returning to initial format

Ballon d'Or

From 2017, the Ballon d’Or will return to its initial format after the end of the partnership between FIFA and France Football, initiator of the award.

That means France Football will once again have sole control of the annual Ballon d’Or prize with votes cast exclusively by journalists in Europe.

Since the FIFA and France Football partnership started in 2010 Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi have dominated the award, drawing criticism.

Created in 1956 by France Football, Ballon d’Or initially awarded only European players.

In 1995, it expanded to include non European players playing in Europe and Liberian George Weah was the first non-European player to be awarded.

The end of the partnership could see the return of FIFA’s World Player of the Year award, with FIFA president Gianni Infantino and other officials planning a potential replacement ceremony.

FIFA are said to be looking into moving the event around different cities each year.