Barcelona manager Ernesto Valverde was left far from impressed at the results of the Ballon d'Or award earlier this week, claiming that the vote for the coveted trophy was 'absurd'.

Valverde's qualms didn't come from the overall winner of the Ballon d'Or, something he was keen to point out when praising Real Madrid midfielder Luka Modrić for his success with both club and country this year.


Instead, the Barcelona manager spoke of his bemusement that Lionel Messi finished in fifth place in the voting, behind the likes of Cristiano Ronaldo, Antoine Griezmann and Kylian Mbappé, who scooped the Kopa trophy (an Under-21 Ballon d'Or) earlier in the night.

"We congratulate Modrić for winning the Ballon d'Or but Messi being in fifth place is absurd," Valverde said, quoted by the Daily Star. "I will not get into discussing the inconsistencies of the prize."

Barcelona's manager was not the only one scratching their heads at the result of the Ballon d'Or, especially following Messi's outstanding record in 2018.

The Argentine scored 60 goals and claimed 24 assists in just 70 games, while also winning La Liga, the Copa del Rey, the Supercopa de España and the European Golden Boot.

The year's award saw Messi and Ronaldo's decade-long reign at the top of European football's hierarchy come to an end, with Modrić becoming the first different winner since Kaká in 2007.

The ceremony was groundbreaking for a whole other reason, as Lyon striker Ada Hegerberg became the first-ever recipient of the Ballon d'Or Féminin.

The Norway international has already scored 10 goals in the top tier of women's football in France this season. Hegerberg also has the same goal per game strike rate in the Champions League.