Lionel Messi looks set to extend his record of Ballon d’Or titles later this month. The Argentine superstar has already collected the award seven times in his illustrious career. This is currently two more than any other player, including Cristiano Ronaldo. Nevertheless, reports out of Spain suggest that Messi will soon win his eighth Ballon d’Or trophy. If true, he will become the first-ever player currently playing for a team outside of Europe to win the award.

SPORT, in a now-deleted post, claims that Messi has received the most votes for the award. The 2023 Ballon d’Or ceremony is set to be held in Paris on October 30th. However, voting for the prestigious trophy has already been completed.

Messi to edge Man City striker for yet another Ballon d’Or

Many saw Messi as the frontrunner for the award. The star led Argentina to World Cup triumph at the 2022 tournament in Qatar. It was previously the main missing trophy in Messi’s cabinet. The victory in the Middle East was also the first World Cup trophy for Argentina since the days of Deigo Maradona in 1986.

Although Messi’s current club, Inter Miami, failed to reach the Major League Soccer playoffs, he did make a significant early impact with the team. Miami collected the Leagues Cup trophy back in August. Messi managed to score at least one goal in every single game of the competition. It was the club’s first ever trophy in their relatively short history.

Manchester City striker Erling Haaland is Messi’s main competitor for the Ballon d’Or. The Norway international is a scoring machine for club and country. Haaland’s goals guided City to a historic 2022/23 season. The club eventually won the treble, as they collected the Premier League, Champions League, and FA Cup trophies.

Spanish star expected to win women’s award

Along with reporting that Messi will soon win his eighth Ballon d’or, the Spanish news outlet also claimed that Aitana Bonmati will win the women’s award. The Barcelona midfielder recently starred in the 2023 Women’s World Cup with Spain. Bonmati helped Barca win the Liga F title. Then, this past summer, she led Spain as it collected its first-ever Women’s World Cup title.