Croatian midfielder Luka Modric has won the 2018 Ballon d'Or to end the past decade dominated by Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi for the award. Modric beat Ronaldo, Frenchman Antoine Griezmann and another France World Cup winning member Kylian Mbappe in the vote. Messi finished fifth. This is for the first time that the Barcelona star did not finish among the first two.
Meanwhile, Modric after receiving the award said it was a proud moment for him. "It's a unique feeling, I'm happy, proud and it's an honour, extraordinary emotions at the moment,” Modric was quoted as saying by goal.com. Women’s Ballon D’Or Winner Ada Hegerberg Asked to “Twerk” by DJ at Presentation Ceremony
"I just want to thank all those who helped me to be here tonight, I thank my team-mates, my coaches, the staff and Real Madrid, all those who work there, the coaches and team-mates in the national team, the ones who voted for me and my family, which allows me to blossom as a person.
"Always have dreams, I wanted to play in a big club, win titles, the Ballon d'Or is all I could dream [about] as a child, it's an honour to win it tonight.
"It's a great pleasure to be here around these players. I keep thinking, I'm trying to get used to being part of this group of exceptional players who have won the Ballon d'Or in history. It's a great pleasure to be part of this group.
"Throughout my career, I understood that work, persistence, believing in yourself, is the basis for expressing your talent. I like a saying - the best is never easy. For me, it was not easy. It was necessary to seize the opportunities,” he added.
Founded in 1956 by France Football magazine, Ballon d'Or honours the player with the best performance over the year based on voting by football journalists. It was merged with FIFA World Player of the Year into FIFA Ballon d'Or in 2010 before the two awards were separated in 2016. (Inputs IANS).