Ballon d’Or 2022 winners, rankings, final awards results as Karim Benzema, Alexia Putellas take top prize

Karim Benzema

The wait has ended. Karim Benzema, a striker for Real Madrid, earned his first Ballon d’Or of the season on Monday, October 17, becoming the second-oldest winner of the trophy at 34 years old and the oldest since Englishman Stanley Matthews, who took home the inaugural trophy in 1956 at age 41.

The Frenchman received recognition for a remarkable season in 2021–2022, during which his side won both the Spanish La Liga and the UEFA Champions League, and he finished as the competition’s leading scorer. He and France also triumphed in the UEFA Nations League.

Given that no other player could possibly match Benzema’s accomplishments, it was widely believed that he would receive the prize for best player in the world. In 2021/22, he scored a total of 44 goals for Real Madrid and an additional six for France.

Alexia Putellas of Barcelona won her second consecutive Ballon d’Or while fighting back tears in her victory speech, after missing the last few months due to a knee ailment. After Spain missed out on the Euros, she said that she didn’t believe winning the Ballon d’Or would have been conceivable.


With six overall Ballon d’Or contenders, Manchester City won Club of the Year, while Sadio Mane received the first Socrates Award, which recognizes players’ acts of camaraderie.

Following Lionel Messi’s contentious Ballon d’Or triumph in 2021, numerous changes were made to the voting procedure for the award’s 2022 iteration, including a decrease in the number of media voters and adjustments to the standards used to evaluate players. For the first time, the European club season (August to July), rather than the calendar year, was used to select the finalists. In addition, voters no longer considered voters’ career achievements when making decisions.

The Ballon d’Or awards are what?
On Monday, awards will be given out for a total of seven different categories. In 2021, the first Gerd Muller Trophy and Club of the Year were given out.

  • Men’s Ballon d’Or (Player of the Year)
  • Women’s Ballon d’Or (Player of the Year): Alexia Putellas (Barcelona)
  • Kopa Trophy (Best Under-21 men’s player): Gavi (Barcelona)
  • Yashin Trophy (Best men’s goalkeeper): Thibaut Courtois (Real Madrid)
  • Gerd Muller Trophy (best striker): Robert Lewandowski (Barcelona)
  • Socrates Award (recognizing player acts of solidarity): Sadio Mane (Bayern)
  • Club of the Year (club with most Ballon d’Or nominees): Manchester City
  • SOURCE: The Sporting News

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