The Ballon d’Or will not be awarded to any footballer this year for the first time since 1956.
The disruption has been caused by the coronavirus pandemic which has affected the 2019/20 season with some competitions cancelled.
There has been no international football for the past four months and it’s uncertain whether it will return this year, something that affects the selection of the coveted award.
The organisers of the awards, France Football, announced the news on Monday.
“In exceptional circumstances, exceptional provisions. For the first time in its history, which began in 1956, the Ballon d’Or France Football will not be awarded in 2020, due to the lack of sufficient fair conditions,” read the statement on France Football website.
“From a sports perspective, two months (January and February), out of the eleven generally required to form an opinion and decide who should lift the trophies, represent far too little to gauge and judge ; without forgetting that the other games were played – or will be played – in unordinary conditions (behind closed doors, with five replacements, Champions League’s Final 8 played in a single game).
“Finally, the equity that prevails for this honorary title will not be warranted, especially when it comes to accounting and preparation : all the award seekers will not be in the same boat, some having seen their season cut short. Therefore, how can we establish a fair comparison? To avoid overly convoluted calculations and projections, we chose the least bad of the options.
“This decision, which was taken of course with all the Group stakeholders, does not delight us but it seems to be the most responsible one. Protecting the credibility and legitimacy of such an award also means ensuring its flawlessness over time.
“The Ballon d’Or will gather again the football big family and enthusiasts in 2021, to relive the happiness that surrounds the ceremonies as we have experienced them in recent years.”