Photo: Fox Soccer
In one of the many traditions that makes European soccer more grandiose than American sports, FIFA held its annual gala to present the Ballon d’Or in Switzerland today.The Ballon d’Or is like the MVP award.
Instead of simply holding a press conference to announce the winners, FIFA throws a big ceremony involving dancing, singing, mascots, and the inexplicable presence of small children.
It’s oddly compelling, and we were pretty impressed, even if Cristiano Ronaldo wasn’t.
The ceremony took place in Zurich, where FIFA is based. The venue was smaller than your typical awards show
The three women vying for the top award were (from left to right) Marta of Brazil, Alex Morgan and Abby Wambach of the US. They had to sit together
So did the men's contenders (L to R): Cristiano Ronaldo, Andres Iniesta, and Lionel Messi, who wore an awesome polka-dot suit
The ceremony began with a lengthy speech by FIFA president Sepp Blatter. And boy, the crowd was not into it
The weirdness continued when Ronaldo, who just lost 30 pounds on a Brazilian reality show, showed up
After that we got down to the awards. FIFA presented the 11 best players in the world at their respective positions, and inexplicably had a little kid come out with them
Here's who made the cut. All 11 players play professionally in the Spanish La Liga, and seven are on the Spanish national team
Then Spanish coach Vicente del Bosque won men's coach of the year, and his doppelganger presented him with the award
Almost 90 minutes after the ceremony began, it was time for the big awards. A lovely looking Hope Solo presented the award for female player of the year
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