Croatia and Real Madrid midfielder Luka Modric won 2018 edition of Ballon d'Or on Monday. He ended a decade of superstars Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo’s dominance of the most prestigious accolade in world football.
Former Brazil and AC Milan forward Kaka won the award in 2007 and he is the only player other than Messi or Ronaldo to win it in this decade.
Modric, the 33-year-old playmaker, who grew up during Croatian War of Independence, won his third successive Champions League with Real in May and helped his Croatia national side to a first World Cup final. He was fifth in Ballon d'Or poling last year.
In the star studded event in Paris, Portuguese hero Ronaldo came second, with World Cup winners Atletico Madrid striker Antoine Griezmann and PSG attacker Kylian Mbappe third and fourth respectively. Argentine prodigy and Barcelona forward Messi came fifth on the list.
Ballon d'Or has been given by France Football magazine since 1956 and the women’s award was introduced this year for the first time.
Norway and Lyon striker Ada Hegerberg created history by winning the first women's Ballon d'Or. The 23-year-old attacker won the Champions League and Ligue 1 Feminine twice. France emerging star Kylian Mbappé, the youngest player to score in a World Cup won Raymond Kopa Trophy for the world's best men's player under 21.
Last year’s winner Ronaldo, who has won five times, is the most winner of the award, while Messi has won four times.