Photos: Cristiano Ronaldo wins FIFA Ballon d’Or 2014 for the third time

The Portugal international has been voted the best player in the world for 2014 by national team captains, coaches and journalists.

Real Madrid attacker Cristiano Ronaldo has won the 2014 Fifa Ballon d’Or ahead of Bayern Munich goalkeeper Manuel Neuer and Barcelona forward Lionel Messi, scooping up the prestigious individual award for the third time in his football career.

Ronaldo enjoyed a hugely successful 2014, in which he guided Madrid to Champions League glory by netting a record 17 goals in one campaign.

Additionally, the prolific attacker played an integral part in the Santiago Bernabeu side’s Copa del Rey win by netting three goals in six appearances, even if he missed the final against Barcelona due to injury.

On an individual level, the 29-year-old won the Liga top scorer award by scoring 31 goals in 30 appearances, which also saw him crowned joint-winner of the European Golden Shoe together with Luis Suarez.

Ronaldo becomes the seventh player in history to successfully defend his Ballon d’Or title after Johan Cruyff, Kevin Keegan, Karl-Heinz Rummenigge, Michel Platini, Marco van Basten and Messi.

The Portugal international was first voted the world’s best in 2008, when he piped Messi and Fernando Torres to the coveted trophy. He then had to settle for second spot in 2009, 2011 and 2012 before winning the award a second time in 2013, this time ahead of Messi and Franck Ribery.

The former Manchester United star has moved level with Cruyff, Platini and Van Basten on three wins, with only Messi ahead of him on four Ballon d’Or trophies.

Neuer missed out on the chance to become the first goalkeeper to win the award since Lev Yashin in 1963 after guiding Germany to World Cup glory and winning the Bundesliga title and DFB-Pokal with Bayern.

Messi, meanwhile, made it to the podium for the seventh time in succession after he was crowned all-time top goalscorer of La Liga and the Champions League in 2014.

Picture credit: Getty images

Cristiano Ronaldo crowned 2014 Ballon d’Or award
Ronaldo (left) enjoys a selfie with Marta before the FIFA Ballon d'Or Gala on Monday evening
Ronaldo (left) enjoys a selfie with Marta before the FIFA Ballon d’Or
The 29-year-old played an integral role as Real Madrid won the Champions League last season
The 29-year-old played an integral role as Real Madrid won the Champions League last season
Neuer (left) was a mainstay in the Bayern team that won the Bundesliga and DFB Pokal Cup last season
Neuer (left) was a mainstay in the Bayern team that won champions league
The 28-year-old's brilliant year was completed by helping Germany to win the World Cup last summer
The 28-year-old’s brilliant year was completed by helping Germany to win the World Cup last summer
Neuer (left) signs autographs on the red carpet ahead of the Ballon d'Or Gala on Monday evening
Neuer (left) signs autographs on the red carpet ahead of the Ballon d’Or 
Messi (right) arrived on to the red carpet with his partner Antonella Roccuzzo
Messi (right) arrived on to the red carpet with his partner Antonella Roccuzzo
The diminutive superstar is mobbed by fans on the carpet as he signs autographs 
The diminutive superstar is mobbed by fans on the carpet as he signs autographs
Messi (centre right) captained Argentina to the World Cup final where they lost to Germany after extra-time
Messi (centre right) captained Argentina to the World Cup final where they lost to Germany
The 27-year-old (centre) scored 50 goals in 52 appearances for Barcelona last season
The 27-year-old (centre) scored 50 goals in 52 appearances for Barcelona last season
The trio were all included in the FIFPro World Team of the Year which is selected by their peers

 

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