Cristiano Ronaldo has made history — again. The Real Madrid superstar has been named winner of the Ballon d’Or, awarded to the world’s best footballer, for the second consecutive year.
Even more impressive? This is the fifth time Ronaldo has earned such an honor, tying him with Lionel Messi for the most Ballon d’Or in history.
Ronaldo beat out fellow finalists in Barcelona’s Messi and Paris Saint Saint-Germain’s Neymar to emerge as the winner of the Ballon d’Or. He had previously won the award in 2008, 2013, 2014 and 2016. Even detractors of the 32-year-old legend would be hard-pressed to say it wasn’t fully deserved for his play over the past calendar year, though.
Ronaldo became the first player in Champions League history to score a goal in all six games of group play this season. He scored two goals in Real Madrid’s dominant 4-1 victory over Juventus in the final, and also led his team to its first La Liga championship in five seasons. The Portuguese striker was hardly the means of his team’s success alone, however; teammates Luka Modric and Sergia Ramos finished fifth and sixth in voting for the Ball d’Or, respectively.
Earlier this week, after the birth of his fourth child, Ronaldo said that he isn’t finished growing his family or winning the Ballon d’Or.
“If you ask me if I want to win it, I’ll obviously tell you yes. I know what a fifth Ballon d’Or would mean for posterity,” he said, courtesy of an ESPN translation. “I want seven children and as many Ballons d’Or. As long as I play, I’ll have the ambition to win all I can.
“So, my dream is the fifth Ballon d’Or. And, next year, there will be another one to look for.”