BARCA STRUGGLE TO DEFEAT

Barcelona’s loss against Real Sociedad and more recently against the relegation threatened club Valladolid has allowed Real Madrid and Athletic Madrid on leaping ahead of them and the pressure is building up on Gerardo Martino as well as the players.

The players themselves are experiencing the pressure from their recent negative results of the Spanish League and Daniel Alves has told the fans that the squad will keep on fighting for a chance to win La Liga.

PLATINI BACKS DUO

UEFA president Michel Platini is of the opinion that the duo of Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi can continue winning the FIFA Ballon d’Or award for the next 10 years. The duo have shared the award between themselves since 2008.

Ronaldo has become the latest recipient of the award, which is the second time he has won it during his illustrious career. Thus, he finally managed to bring an end to the dominance of Messi, who had won it four times in a row previously. Platini, though, reckons that the domination of these two players is not done yet.

FORLAN BACKS SUAREZ

Uruguay striker Diego Forlan has backed his international compatriot Luis Suarez to win the FIFA Ballon d’Or award if he carries on performing at this same level. The Liverpool striker has become one of the best in the world this campaign after going on to score 23 goals in the Premier league already.

He is on course to beating his previous best of 30 goals last season. Forlan is a player who has played in some of the top leagues in the world like England and Spain. He is also regarded as Uruguay's greatest player in recent decades.

SHORTLIST

Ballon d’Or the award that every coach, player and fan are talking about with everyone having their own opinion on who should claim it this time around. The 3 candidates on securing the award are: Franck Ribery, C.Ronaldo and Lionel Messi.

Lionel Messi is the powerhouse as he is the only player not only to snatch it up 4 times but the Argentinean wonder-kid has won it in consecutive years with no one coming even close on taking it away from him.

WORKING HARDER

Bayern Munich's Franck Ribery has said that he was much harder than the likes of Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi, who will be his rivals for the FIFA Ballon d’Or award.

The Barcelona superstar, Lionel Messi is the current holder of this award after having won it four times in succession. Ribery, though, is a favourite to win the award this time around after having helped his team win all the major trophies last season including the Champions League. Ribery scored in the 3-1 win over Manchester City in the group stages of the competition.

TIME TO SHINE

After a number of unsuccessful and disappointing years, England is now in search of redemption that would put them back to the level and glory they experienced back in 1966 when they won their last World Cup trophy.

Despite having a fairly impressive squad available to play, England have a hard time laying their claim to the trophy, and struggle to get into the same stage as other top teams such as: Spain, Italy, Netherlands all of which have been making an impact in the recent years.

ROBBEN IS BACK TO HIS BEST

Bayern Munich star Arjen Robben had an incredible second half of the season with his club, as he helped them win the famous treble. This included the Champions league title as well.

Normally, the FIFA Ballon d’Or award title is given to the best player in the Champions League campaign. Apart from scoring in the final of the competition itself, Robben was an influential figure for Bayern Munich. Hence, he is one of the names being mentioned as a possible candidate to win this prestigious award. The player himself, though, thinks that he will not win this award.

DREAMING IN GOLD

Former Bayern Munich manager Jupp Heynckes has said that he expects a member of the Bayern Munich team to win the FIFA Ballon d’Or award this season. This award is regarded as the crowning glory in a professional's career. It is given to the individual who has had the outstanding season.

VOTING QUESTIONED

Real Madrid manager José Mourinho has revealed that he did not take part in the January gala that announced winners of the FIFA Ballon d’Or award and the manager of the year award from FIFA because he knew ahead of the ceremony that the votes were inaccurate.

Mourinho has revealed that some of the managers who have voted for the Portuguese had said that their votes were wrongly registered. As a result, Mourinho chose not to attend the gala function. He has also said that he is not regret the actions.

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