The Ballon d’Or award, which is usually given to the greatest male and female footballers in the world, will henceforth be based on their performances throughout a season rather than a calendar year.
This is coming late after so many players have evidently lost out on winning the award after several outstanding individual performances in their respective teams.
The coveted award organizers, France Football magazine, have also chosen to restrict the number of judges.
For the men’s award, a panel of 170 journalists will be reduced to 100, while the women’s award will have 50 judges.
Pascal Ferre of France Football said: “We used to judge based on two-thirds of a season. This will be more obvious.”
“It’s a chance to give it a new lease on life,” the France Football editor continued.
The adjustments come after criticism of Barcelona forward Lionel Messi’s selection as Ballon d’Or winner in 2021 when many believed Bayern Munich striker Robert Lewandowski deserved the award.
Messi won the prestigious award for a record seventh time, but Lewandowski, who came in second, has 41 Bundesliga goals in the 2020-21 season, helping Bayern win the championship for the ninth time in a row.
According to Ferre, greater attention will be focused on individual player performances rather than trophies won by a player’s team.
The number of judges will be changed to 100 journalists from the top-ranked men’s football countries and 50 journalists from the top-ranked women’s football nations.
France Football described the change as “less worldwide but… far more difficult” on its official Twitter account.
The next Ballon d’Or honors will be held in September or October 2022 and will honor the season that ended in July with the women’s Euro 2022.
The judges will not examine the men’s World Cup, which will be held in Qatar in November and December, until the 2023 awards.