Fans Voted For Lionel Messi To Win The Ballon d'Or Ahead Of Virgil Van Dijk
Football fans have come out overwhelmingly in support of Lionel Messi to be named the 2019 Ballon d'Or winner ahead of Virgil van Dijk.
SPORTbible posted a readers' poll on Twitter asking which player should take home France Football's coveted prize.
Messi and Van Dijk featured alongside Liverpool duo Sadio Mané and Mohamed Salah in the poll, with the Barcelona captain taking home more than half of the votes.
With over 30,000 fans taking part in the poll, the 31-year-old Argentine forward came out on top with 54 per cent of the vote.
Van Dijk came in second place after securing 40 per cent, leaving his fellow Liverpool teammates to each receive three per cent share of the votes.
Who deserves to win the 2019 Ballon d'Or? :trophy:- SPORTbible (@sportbible) 5 June 2019
Messi's season with Barcelona came with both its high and low points.
The five-time Ballon d'Or winner won La Liga with his side and took home both the European Golden Shoe and the Pichichi Trophy (awarded to the Spanish league's top scorer in the season).
On the other hand, Barcelona were humiliated in the Champions League semi-finals after a 4-0 second-leg thrashing at the hands of Liverpool.
That's not to mention the La Liga champions losing 2-1 in the final of the Copa del Rey.
Meanwhile, Van Dijk took home the PFA Players' Player of the Year award and helped Liverpool finish second in the Premier League, along with ending his season with some major silverware after lifting the Champions League.
However, the 27-year-old Dutch centre-back has put his backing behind Messi to win the Ballon d'Or.
"I think Messi is the best player in the world and I think he deserves it as long as he plays," he said.
Not everyone feels the same way as Van Dijk, though.
While Messi would move ahead of Cristiano Ronaldo with a record sixth Ballon d'Or, Netherlands boss Ronald Koeman believes the Liverpool defender deserves to win the award.
"He deserves the Ballon d'Or," he told the Netherlands' official YouTube channel.
"Everyone is often focused on players who score or create goals, or produce decisive goals.
"If there is ever a moment to give the Ballon d'Or to a defender, it is now.
"Messi is the best player, but I also think you should win big trophies such as the Champions League to be in the picture for the Ballon d'Or."
Van Dijk or Messi to win the Ballon d'Or?
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Featured Image Credit: PA