Tuesday, 12 July 2016

Did you believe Ronaldo has already secured another Ballon d'Or

Betting Special: Bookies believe Ronaldo has already secured another Ballon d'Or
After adding an international trophy to another stellar year of personal and club success, the bookmakers are struggling to see past the Real Madrid man securing a fourth award.

After a night filled with the rawest emotions for Cristiano Ronaldo the Real Madrid forward found himself crowned as champion of Europe for the second time in six weeks on Sunday. The star of Portugal's side was on the pitch for barely 25 minutes of the final against France, but his team-mates did him proud and helped him achieve the one thing that had been missing from his staggering collection of silverware. Now with a major international title, Ronaldo can reflect on having achieved everything he had wanted during his career, yet such is his relentless desire for success, that he will surely be desperate to claim his fourth Ballon d'Or award. Having already won the Champions League with Real Madrid back at the end of May, as well as ending the competition as top scorer, Ronaldo is the overwhelming favourite to claim the biggest indiviual prize on the planet and Paddy Power price him at 1/6 (1.17).

It would take a monumental run of bad form or injury problems to prevent the 31-year-old from winning, with one of his rivals for the prize Antoine Griezmann admitting after Sunday's final that "for the Ballon d'Or, it is all over, Ronaldo won the two big competitions this season".
Had things gone differently in Paris it could have been the Atletico Madrid man in the front running for the prize, with Griezmann having helped his club to the final of the Champions League and ending Euro 2016 as the top scorer and player of the tournament. He is offered at 5/1 (6.00) just behind the current holder Lionel Messi who is priced at 9/2 (5.50) with the Argentine's league and cup double with Barcelona looking unlikely to count for much.
Messi was unable to help his national team to continental success in the Copa America, with his subsequent retirement from international football casting a shadow over his excellent showing in the tournament. Another player who suffered disappointment at the Copa America was Luis Suarez, as his Uruguay side exited at the group stages. Suarez was unable to feature because of injury, a huge blow after a stunning season which saw him end as the top scorer in La Liga.
Indeed Suarez was the first player other than Ronaldo or Messi to be La Liga top scorer since his compatriot Diego Forlan in 2009, while one has to go back to 2007 to find the last time anyone other than those two players won the Ballon D'Or,. Suarez is priced at 11/2 (6.50) to win while there is then a big jump in the betting to Gareth Bale who is offered at 25/1 (26.00) after a historic showing at  Euro 2016, the same price as Paul Pogba who had a rather less impressive tournament. Neymar, who will be hoping to help Brazil to Olympic Gold, is available at 33/1 (34.00) with Thomas Muller and Andres Iniesta offered at 50/1 (51.00).
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