2009 Ballon d'Or winner Lionel Messi.
The 2009 Ballon d'Or, given to the best football player in the world as judged by an international panel of sports journalists, was awarded to Lionel Messi of FC Barcelona on 1 December 2009.
Messi won the award by a record margin, 240 points ahead of 2008 winner Cristiano Ronaldo. Xavi was the second Barcelona player in the top three, finishing a further 63 points behind Ronaldo. Messi's win made him the first Argentine-born player to win the award since Omar Sívori in 1961; however, Sívori had taken Italian citizenship by that time and is recognised to have won the Ballon d'Or as an Italian player.
Additionally, another player was nominated but received no votes: Karim Benzema (Lyon, Real Madrid).
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