After a one year break due to the pandemic, the Ballon d’Or will return in 2021 with world football’s biggest stars set to descend on Paris in November.
The men’s field is the most open it has been for some time. Lionel Messi is looking to claim his seventh award, while long-time rival Cristiano Ronaldo is vying for a sixth triumph.
There are plenty of new stars on the block as well. Robert Lewandowski will be hoping to win his first ever Ballon d’Or, as will Chelsea pair Jorginho and N’Golo Kante.
Meanwhile, the Ballon d’Or Feminin will likely go to one of Barcelona’s stars, after they secured a famous treble last season.
Here is everything you need to know ahead of the awards ceremony…
When is the 2021 Ballon d’Or ceremony?
The 2021 Ballon d’Or will take place on Monday 29 November at the Theatre du Chatelet in Paris – the same venue that was used for the 2019 awards.
France Football has not yet announced the exact start time yet, so keep your eyes peeled to 90min for any updates.
Who is nominated for the 2021 Ballon d’Or?
The nominees for the both the male and female award were revealed on Friday 8 October. The contenders for the 2021 Yashin Trophy, awarded for best goalkeeper, and the 2021 Kopa Trophy, given to the best young player, have also been announced.
2021 Ballon d’Or shortlist
Riyad Mahrez (Man City)
N’Golo Kante (Chelsea)
Erling Haaland (Borussia Dortmund)
Leonardo Bonucci (Juventus)
Mason Mount (Chelsea)
Harry Kane (Tottenham)
Gianluigi Donnarumma (AC Milan, PSG)
Karim Benzema (Real Madrid)
Raheem Sterling (Man City)
Nicolo Barella (Inter)
Lionel Messi (Barcelona, PSG)
Bruno Fernandes (Man Utd)
Luka Modric (Real Madrid)
Giorgio Chiellini (Juventus)
Kevin De Bruyne (Man City)
Ruben Dias (Man City)
Lautaro Martinez (Inter)
Simon Kjaer (AC Milan)
Robert Lewandowski (Bayern Munich)
Mohamed Salah (Liverpool)
Cesar Azpilicueta (Chelsea)
Romelu Lukaku (Inter, Chelsea)
Cristiano Ronaldo (Juventus, Man Utd)
Gerard Moreno (Villarreal)
Phil Foden (Man City)
Kylian Mbappe (PSG)
Luis Suarez (Atletico Madrid)
2021 Ballon d’Or Feminin shortlist
Stina Blackstenius (Häcken)
Kadidiatou Diani (PSG)
Christiane Endler (PSG, Lyon)
Magdalena Eriksson (Chelsea)
Jessie Fleming (Chelsea)
Pernille Harder (Chelsea)
Jennifer Hermoso (Barcelona)
Marie-Antoinette Katoto (PSG)
Sam Kerr (Chelsea)
Fran Kirby (Chelsea)
Ashley Lawrence (PSG)
Lieke Martens (Barcelona)
Samantha Mewis (Manchester City, North Carolina Courage)
Vivianne Miedema (Arsenal)
Sandra Panos (Barcelona)
Irene Paredes (PSG, Barcelona)
Alexia Putellas (Barcelona)
Wendie Renard (Lyon)
Christine Sinclair (Portland Thorns)
Ellen White (Manchester City)
2021 Yashin Trophy shortlist
Gianluigi Donnarumma (AC Milan/ Paris Saint-Germain)
Ederson (Manchester City)
Kasper Schmeichel (Leicester City)
Edouard Mendy (Chelsea)
Thibaut Courtois (Real Madrid)
Keylor Navas (PSG)
Emiliano Martinez (Aston Villa)
Manuel Neuer (Bayern Munich)
Jan Oblak (Atletico Madrid)
Samir Handanovic (Inter)
2021 Kopa Trophy shortlist
Mason Greenwood (Manchester United)
Bukayo Saka (Arsenal)
Jeremy Doku (Rennes)
Ryan Gravenberch (Ajax)
Folrian Wirtz (Bayer Leverkusen)
Jude Bellingham (Borussia Dortmund)
Giovanni Reyna (Borussia Dortmund)
Nuno Mendes (Paris Saint-Germain)
Ballon d’Or: Every winner of football’s top individual honour
How to watch the Ballon d’Or 2021 on TV or live stream
You will be able to follow the ceremony on L’Equipe’s YouTube channel. Full details on how to do this will be added here when France Football unveil more information.
Who won at the Ballon d’Or 2019 awards?
Ballon d’Or: Lionel Messi
Ballon d’Or Feminin: Megan Rapinoe
Kopa Trophy: Matthijs de Ligt
Yashin Trophy: Alisson
Favourites for the 2021 Ballon d’Or
There are a few standout contenders for the 2021 Ballon d’Or. Lionel Messi finally ended his wait for an international trophy in the summer when he led Argentina to Copa America glory. He also had a terrific 2020/21 season – despite playing in a hugely dysfunctional Barcelona side.
Champions League winning Chelsea pair N’Golo Kante and Jorginho – the latter whom also won the Euros – have been attracted a lot of discussion too. Meanwhile, if the judges like goals, Robert Lewandowski is in with a terrific chance.
For the Yashin Trophy, Euro 2020 winner Gianluigi Donnarumma will surely see off challenges from Edouard Mendy and Ederson to scoop top prize. Elsewhere, Pedri and Erling Haaland will likely battle it out for the Kopa Trophy.
The Ballon d’Or Feminin is going to Barcelona. However, it remains uncertain whether Alexia Putellas, Caroline Graham Hansen, Aitana Bonmati or Jenni Hermoso will win it. Chelsea’s Sam Kerr might sneak onto the podium, though.