Messi Admits Lewandowski Deserved Ballon d’Or

Lewandowski and Messi

Paris Saint-Germain forward Lionel Messi said that Robert Lewandowski deserved to win the 2020 Ballon d’Or award after he picked up the trophy for a record seventh time on Monday.

Lewandowski played a key role in helping Bayern Munich complete the Quadruple in 2020, but last year’s Ballon d’Or ceremony wasn’t held due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

France Football, who organises the Ballon d’Or, created a new Striker of the Year award for the 2021 edition, which they gave to Lewandowski.

“Robert, you deserve your Ballon d’Or. Last year, everyone was in agreement to say that you were the big winner of this award,” Messi said in his speech.

“Hopefully France Football will give you the 2020 Ballon d’Or. We all believe you deserved it and I hope you can have it at home.”

Messi earned 613 points in the voting for the trophy while Lewandowski scored 580.

Messi, who led Argentina to Copa America success in Brazil in July for their first major trophy since 1993, spent the majority of 2020 at Barcelona before his 21-year stay at the club ended when he left on a free transfer in August and joined Paris Saint-Germain soon after. However, some were unimpressed that Messi received the award.

“Each time I find it harder to believe in football awards,” former Spain and Real Madrid goalkeeper Iker Casillas wrote on Twitter.