Arsenal legend Thierry Henry has thrown his weight behind Lionel Messi to win the Ballon d’Or, despite his disappointment over France’s World Cup final loss. The Inter Miami forward, in the lead for the prestigious award, showcased historic performances in Qatar, clinching his first world champion title with six remarkable goals.

Henry, Messi’s former clubmate, recognizes the Argentine’s outstanding achievements and confidently predicts he will secure the Ballon d’Or on October 30 in Paris. He stated, “If you win the World Cup, the way he did it, we can talk about what happened in the final… you can’t say that it isn’t deserved if he wins it.”

Messi’s tournament was nothing short of a career-defining masterpiece. He rallied his team after a rocky start, ultimately propelling Argentina to a thrilling final against France. His two crucial goals and composed penalty in the decisive shootout earned him the Golden Ball, an honour last achieved by Diego Maradona.

Source: Marca

Despite Messi’s stellar performance, Manchester City’s Erling Haaland poses a formidable challenge for the coveted title. Haaland’s staggering 52 goals last season helped secure a historic Treble for the Cityzens. Newcastle forward Callum Wilson noted Haaland’s remarkable statistics and cautioned against underestimating his impact. Wilson emphasized that “Haaland should win the award” when considering club football achievements.

West Ham forward Michail Antonio echoed Wilson’s sentiments, underlining Haaland’s record-breaking contributions to a treble-winning team. Antonio asserted, “He deserves that Ballon d’Or. If he doesn’t get it then it’s a scandal.”

The race for the Ballon d’Or promises to be a closely contested affair, with Messi’s World Cup triumph facing off against Haaland’s stellar club football performances. The award ceremony on October 30 will reveal who emerges as the best player on the planet for 2023.

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