Saturday, December 3, 2022

What Is The ‘Golden Ball’ Trophy That Is Awarded At FIFA World Cup?

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Abhinab Ghosh
A 26-year-old sports writer and an aspiring football coach who has road-tripped across the Scottish Highlands, but has never been to Wales. Sucker for cliff-hangers and catchy riffs. Known to be a grunger and not to be a stranger.

The 2022 FIFA World Cup will take place in Qatar next month with 32 top nations in world football fighting it out among themselves to see who gets crowned as the new champions of the world. This year’s World Cup will kick off on November 20 and end on December 18 with the final being held at the Lusail Iconic Stadium. With so many world-class players on show, all eyes will be on the Middle East where the competition is taking place for the first time in its history.

To mark the return of the prestigious FIFA tournament, let’s find out what the ‘golden ball’ trophy is all about.

What Is FIFA’s Golden Ball Award?

The top player in each FIFA World Cup finals tournament gets named the winner of the Golden Ball award. FIFA’s technical committee (Technical Study Group) is responsible for making the shortlist with the winner being chosen by various media representatives. The second-best footballer in each World Cup competition receives the Silver Ball and the third-best player secures the Bronze Ball award.

Back in the 1982 FIFA World Cup, which was sponsored by Adidas and France Football, FIFA officially started to hand out the Golden Ball award for the first time to the best player of the World Cup.

FIFA World Cup
FIFA World Cup

Here is a full list of all the past Golden Ball winners in World Cup history.

The Best Players From The “World Cup (1930-2010): A Statistical Summary” Book
World Cup  Winner Runner-up Third place
1930 Uruguay Uruguay José Nasazzi Argentina Guillermo Stábile Uruguay José Leandro Andrade
1934 Italy Italy Giuseppe Meazza Austria Matthias Sindelar Czechoslovakia Oldrich Nejedly
1938 France Brazil Leonidas da Silva Italy Silvio Piola Hungary György Sárosi
1950 Brazil Brazil Zizinho Uruguay Juan Alberto Schiaffino Uruguay Obdulio Varela
1954 Switzerland Hungary Ferenc Puskas Hungary Sandor Kocsis Germany Fritz Walter
1958 Sweden Brazil Didí Brazil Pelé France Just Fontaine
1962 Chile Brazil Garrincha Czechoslovakia Josef Masopust Chile Leonel Sánchez
1966 England England Bobby Charlton England Bobby Moore Portugal Eusébio
1970 México Brazil Pelé Brazil Gérson Germany Gerd Müller
1974 West Germany Netherlands Johan Cruyff Germany Franz Beckenbauer Poland Kazimierz Deyna


And below is the official list of past Golden Ball winners since FIFA started giving out the trophy back in 1982.

World Cup Golden Ball Silver Ball Bronze Ball
1982 Spain Italy Paolo Rossi Brazil Falcão West Germany Karl-Heinz Rummenigge
1986 Mexico Argentina Diego Maradona West Germany Harald Schumacher Denmark Preben Elkjær
1990 Italy Italy Salvatore Schillaci West Germany Lothar Matthäus Argentina Diego Maradona
1994 United States Brazil Romário Italy Roberto Baggio Bulgaria Hristo Stoichkov
1998 France Brazil Ronaldo Croatia Davor Šuker France Lilian Thuram
2002 South Korea/Japan Germany Oliver Kahn Brazil Ronaldo South Korea Hong Myung-bo
2006 Germany France Zinedine Zidane Italy Fabio Cannavaro Italy Andrea Pirlo
2010 South Africa Uruguay Diego Forlán Netherlands Wesley Sneijder Spain David Villa
2014 Brazil Argentina Lionel Messi Germany Thomas Müller Netherlands Arjen Robben
2018 Russia Croatia Luka Modrić Belgium Eden Hazard France Antoine Griezmann


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