In what could be an end of Ronaldo-Messi era, Croatian midfielder Luka Modric on Monday grabbed the maiden Ballon d’Or of his career.
The 33-year-old, with the victory, put an end to the nine-year dominance of Barcelona striker Lionel Messi and Portugal’s Cristiano Ronaldo.
Modric, who was accompanied by his wife and three children in the award ceremony, thanked his coaches and family in his acceptance speech. He admitted that he always wanted to play for big clubs as a child and winning Ballon d’Or was more than a childhood dream for him.
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“It’s a unique feeling. I’m happy, proud and honoured. The emotions I feel right now are hard to describe, but I would like to thank everyone who has allowed me to be here tonight. I would like to give thanks to my teammates and coaches at Real Madrid and Croatia. To all those who voted for me, and my family. My wife and kids are fulfilling me as a person and preparing me in all aspects to succeed as a professional,” goal.com quoted Modric, as saying.
“As a kid, my dream was to play for a big club and win trophies. Ballon d’Or was more than a childhood dream for me – and I’m truly honoured and privileged to win this trophy tonight,” he added.
Modric took to his official Instagram handle and posted a picture of him holding the prestigious trophy.
While Ronaldo was at the second place in the Ballon d’Or, France forward player Antoine Griezmann attained the third position. The fourth spot went to French teenager Kylian Mbappe followed by Argentina’s Lionel Messi.
In August, Modric was also named as the UEFA Player of the Year. He rose to heights after his sensational performance in the 2018 FIFA World Cup. He guided the Croatian team to the World Cup final, only to see the side ultimately losing 2-4 to France. The midfielder was awarded the Golden Ball at the tournament for his outstanding performance.