Ada Hegerberg, Luka Modric win 2018 Ballon D'or

Author: DW-Sports
End of an era: Luka Modric broke the stranglehold by Cristiano Ronaldo on the Ballon d'Or in the last decade

Lyon striker Ada Hegerberg and Croatia star Luka Modric were winners of the Ballon d'Or at a ceremony in Paris on Monday night.

Norway striker Ada was rewarded for her prolific form with Champions League winners Lyon as she took the first ever women's Ballon d'Or prize at France Football's awards.

The 23-year-old who has won three Champions League crowns, four French championships and three French Cup titles, saw off competition from VfL Wolfsburg and Denmark's Pernille Harder who finished just six votes shy of Hegerberg in a vote by 45 journalists from around the world.

"I want to say thanks to my teammates because this would not have been possible without them, my coach or our president Jean-Michel Aulas," she told the star-studded audience.

History maker: Ada Hegerberg

Hegerberg, who scored a tournament-record 15 goals for Lyon in the Women's Champions League last season, called the award "a huge step for women's football." However, she also expressed frustration about living "in such a man's world" and said the award will not make her reconsider her refusal to play for Norway because of her unhappiness over perceived inequality.

Modric, who led Coratia to the final of the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia, added the Ballon d'Or to the FIFA Best award to mark an outstanding year for the gifted midfielder.

It was Modric's night at the glittering ceremony at the Grand Palais, near the Champs-Elysees, as he ended Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi's stranglehold on the Ballon d'Or award for the last decade.

TLuka Modric has had an outstanding year

After a vote by 180 journalists from around the world, Ronaldo finished in second behind his former Real Madrid teammate, while Antoine Griezmann of France and Atletico Madrid rounded out the top three.

After a year which included a disappointing World Cup title defence and losing record, there was no German representation on the 30-man shortlist for the first time since 2009.

The lack of one standout French candidate cleared the path for Modric, who heroically helped his country to the World Cup final before being beaten by France in Moscow. The 33-year-old was also at his influential best as Real retained their Champions League crown for the second year running.

After claiming the Golden Ball for the best player at the World Cup, UEFA's player of the season and FIFA's best player award in which he beat out Mohamed Salah and Ronaldo, the Ballon d'Or is the latest addition to the Croatian's enviable collection of individual awards in 2018.

Mbappe takes inaugural Kopa Trophy

 

Earlier in the night, Kylian Mbappe was named winner of the Kopa Trophy for young player of the year. The Paris Saint-Germain forward, who does not turn 20 until later this month, starred as France won the World Cup and also won the best young player award in Russia.

The new award -- named after French former Ballon d'Or winner Raymond Kopa -- was voted for by 33 living former winners of the main Ballon d'Or prize. Mbappe was also among the 30 nominees to win that award, finishing fourth. He has scored 32 goals in 56 games for club and country in the calendar year.