In a night celebrating football on Monday Lionel Messi secured his eighth Ballon d'Or, recognizing his stellar achievements in the 2022-23 season. Paris Saint-Germain's Kylian Mbappe, however, had to do with settling for third place behind Erling Haaland of Manchester City.
Mbappe's 54 goals, a French record, and a World Cup hat-trick in the Final, seemingly weren't enough to clinch the top spot, possibly influenced by PSG's early exit in the Champions League.
Mbappe was visibly angry at the outcome and he didn't hesitate to show his feelings during the ceremony via body language and denying everybody speeches. Mbappe didn't address journalists directly, but he took to Instagram to congratulate Messi, simply writing, "Congratulations Leo on your award. You deserve it."
Mbappe, with his third-place finish, achieved his best-ever Ballon d'Or ranking, surpassing his previous fourth-place record in 2018. This marks his sixth appearance in the top 10, showcasing his consistent excellence over the years.