It is now official, France Football announced Monday, July 20 through a press release the cancellation of the Ballon d’or 2020. The sanitary conditions linked to the covid-19 pandemic complicate the organization of this football event. An unfavourable situation for the presentation of this prestigious trophy. • Because such a singular year cannot – nor must – be treated as an ordinary year. In doubt, it is better to abstain than to persist.
The explanations of France Football, the organizing structure: “ • Because the Golden Ball trophy conveys other values – such as exemplarity, solidarity and responsibility – than sporting excellence alone.
• Because the equity that prevails for this honorary title could not be preserved, especially at the statistical level and also of the preparation since all aspirants to the reward could not be housed in the same sign, Some had their season drastically cut off, others did not. Therefore, how to compare the incomparable?
• Because we did not want to place an indelible asterisk in the style of “trophy won in exceptional circumstances due to the Covid-19 health crisis”. We always prefer a small sprain (to our history) to a big scar. This is the first time since 1956 that the Golden Balloon has paused. The parenthesis does not delight us but seems to us the most responsible and logical. Protecting the credibility and legitimacy of such a reward is also to ensure that it is irreproachable in time.
• Because only two months (January and February), out of the eleven usually required to form an opinion and decide the best (e)s, it is much too little to gauge and judge, given that the other matches took place – or will take place – then in other conditions and formats (in camera, five replacements, European Final 8 on a single game) too far from the usual panorama. We cannot resolve to rely on crippled seasons, with so many special accommodations, to elect the best. The best of what, by the way? It wouldn’t be worthy of our history.
• Because of our more than 220 jurors (men and women combined) around the world, some may have been distracted or diverted from their observation mission due to other priorities and emergencies to manage.
• Because the story of the BO is too precious to take the risk of damaging it with a wobbly exercise. In these turbulent times, offering a parenthesis is a luxury at the same time as an inestimable necessity. So that football, as a whole, rediscovers the spirit and the momentum, the passion and the emotion. We can’t wait for the ball to glow…