Ballon d'Or

The Ballon d’Or trophy is regarded as one of the biggest, if not the biggest, awards in world football and it’s usually organized by the French publication France Football.

The ceremony has been in existence since 1957, and many footballing greats have taken home the prestigious trophy since then.

One of football’s powerhouses, France, has produced some Ballon d’Or winners over the decades. A total of five French players have won the award since its inception.

The likes of Raymond Kopa (1958), Michel Platini (1983, 84 & 85), Jean-Pierre Papin (1991), Zinedine Zidane (1998), and most recently, Karim Benzema.

The Real Madrid striker became the fifth French player to take home the glamorous trophy. He had an astronomical 2021-22 campaign where he registered 50 goals and 16 assists in 58 games across all competitions.

Inspired by his exploits, a couple of young French players could also be hoping to emulate the Frenchman in winning the coveted trophy.

Without further ado, let’s look at three French players who have the potential to win the award in the near future.

#3 Eduardo Camavinga

The Real Madrid midfielder is regarded as one of the best young players in the world and has the potential to have a remarkable football career.

Edouardo Camavinga has already become an influential member of Carlo Ancelotti’s team despite being just 19 years old.

The Frenchman played a key role in Real Madrid winning their 14th UEFA Champions League title in grand style.

Camavinga came second in the Kopa trophy category at the 2022 Ballon d’Or ceremony, losing out to Barcelona’s Gavi.

The teenager could try to emulate teammate Luka Modric as the only midfielder to win the award in recent years. Also, playing for a top club like Real Madrid could boost his chances as they are known for winning top trophies almost every season.

#2 Christopher Nkunku

Another French player who stands a chance of winning the prestigious Ballon d’Or trophy in the near future is Christopher Nkunku.

The 24-year-old RB Leipzig forward was one of the top preforming French players in Europe during the 2021-22 campaign. He registered a combined total of 35 goals and 16 assists across all competitions.

Nkunku’s performance last season didn’t go unnoticed as it earned him his first entry on the award list. He was ranked 25th alongside the likes of Antonio Rudiger, Joao Cancelo, and Joshua Kimmich, among others.

Still aged 24, French forward Nkunku could be a future Ballon d’Or contender should he continue to improve as a player. He has already registered 10 goals in all competitions this season for RB Leipzig.

#1 Kylian Mbappe

Many will argue that it’s only a matter of time before Paris Saint-Germain forward Kylian Mbappe eventually lays his hands on the Ballon d’Or trophy.

The 23-year-old forward is widely regarded as one of the best players in world football. He has already been placed in the same bracket as some veteran stars.

Mbappe clinched the sixth position in the just-concluded 2022 Ballon d’Or rankings, which was a reward for his brilliant display last season. He registered a total of 48 goals and 24 assists for both club and country.

He has already had a sublime start to the ongoing football campaign with 12 goals and one assist for PSG. Mbappe could be another French player to lift the prestigious individual trophy in the near future.

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