Ballon d'Or not to be awarded in 2020 for first time in history

Ballon d'Or not to be awarded in 2020 for first time in history

For the first time in its 64-year history, the Ballon d’Or will not be awarded in 2020 due to the impact the COVID-19 pandemic had on the football world.

France Football and organizer Group L’Équipe, which has given the annual award to the best male soccer star since 1956, announced the decision Monday. The award ceremony is in December.

"There will be no edition in 2020, because it turns out, after thoughtful consideration, that all the conditions are not met. We believe that such a singular year cannot — and should not — be treated as an ordinary one," editor-in-chief of France Football Pascal Ferre said in a statement.

Barcelona’s Lionel Messi is the reigning winner and has traded victories with Cristiano Ronaldo over the past decade-plus. The first Ballon d'Or Féminin was awarded in 2018 to Olympique Lyonnais' Ada Hegerberg. OL Reign and U.S. women’s national team star Megan Rapinoe won it last year.

The award was canceled due to a hiatus in the calendar’s schedule caused by the pandemic, Yahoo Sports reported.

In a standard year there are four Ballon d’Or winners consisting of the best overall male and female players, the Kopa Trophy for best player under the age of 21 and the Yashin Trophy for the best goalkeeper.