Son Heung-min earned a 2019 Ballon d’Or nomination. He is the only Asian player to be part of the list of nominees. The award recognizes the top football player each year.
Son scored several key goals to help Tottenham reach its first UEFA Champions League finals. However, they failed to win against Liverpool. Also, he ranked second in the team with 12 goals in the Premier League. Some of the other nominees this year include FC Barcelona’s Lionel Messi, Juventus’ Cristiano Ronaldo, and Virgil van Dijk.
Son is just the third South Korean to get a Ballon d’Or nomination. The two other Koreans are Seol Ki-hyeon in 2002 and Park Ji-sung in 2005. However, there were 50 nominees during those years. Also, neither Park nor Seol got any votes from international journalists. This year, there are only 30 nominees for the award.
2019 Ballon d’Or Nomination
The awarding ceremony for the Ballon d’Or will be on December 2 in Paris. Son Heung-min is the first Asian to be nominated for the Ballon d’Or in 12 years. The last time an Asian got a nomination for the award was in 2007 when Younis Mahmoud made the shortlist of nominees.
Son is one of the most important players for Tottenham this year. According to National Football Team news, Park scored three goals. Also, he delivered three assists in ten games in this year’s competitions.
The betting odds for Son to win the award are slim. He is up against five-time winners Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi. Also, Van Dijk is the current UEFA Player of the Year, beating Messi by a huge margin in the voting.
Sports betting picks are rooting for Messi and Ronaldo to be the first player to win the award six times. Also, it is important to note that both players finished runner-up five times.
Virtual sports betting sites pointed out that there are seven Liverpool players in the nomination list. Also, there are a total of 15 players from the Premier League. However, Luka Modric is not part of the list. He was last year’s Ballon d’Or winner.