Lionel Messi vs Cristiano Ronaldo for FIFA Ballon d’Or

The 2014 FIFA Ballon d’Or is approaching and as it starts getting closer and closer, not surprisingly it seems to be that the main contenders on winning this prestigious individual award is being fought between Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo but the Portuguese forward has the edge.

Despite everything that Manuel Neuer has accomplished in the past 12 months, it seems like the German goal-keeper is not one of the favorites on lifting the trophy as he performs in a position where it’s extremely difficult to get as much recognition in comparison to a midfielder or a forward.

Only a handful of players have been able to secure this award, even earning it on a single occasion is considered to be very privileged as this trophy is only given to the players that have managed to go above and beyond in a specific time period.

The FIFA Ballon d’Or is generally considered to be the most important or highly regarded individual piece of silverware that a player can receive in their career but not everyone agrees with that idea as Chelsea’s Jose Mourinho believes that this award is bad for football.

"This kind of trophy, the Ballon d'Or, is not good for football. This is why I don't care about it.Sometimes it looks like we are looking for stars; we are looking for some people to be more important than others. And this is not the culture we want in this club.I don't care about it. But it's there. It's there as a consequence of the good work the team is doing. And, if they feel that, okay. It's good for them’’ Jose Mourinho said.

One of the main reasons on why the FIFA Ballon d’Or is critiqued is due to the fact that this prize is almost always given to a midfielder or a forward while the defender and the goal-keeper position is usually overlooked.