Leão and Maignan nominated for the 2022 Ballon d’Or, there are only three Serie A players on the shortlist

Rafael Leão during training at Milanello. (@acmilan.com)

Rafael Leão and Mike Maignan have made the 30-man shortlist.

The Serie A MVP and the Serie A ‘keeper of the Season got an important recognition tonight as France Football announced that they are on the 30-man shortlist for the 2022 Ballon d’Or.

Rafael Leão and Mike Maignan were two of the most important players in the 2021/22 season of Milan and will certainly continue to be in the next Serie A campaign which starts tomorrow against Udinese at 18:30 CEST at San Siro.

This is the second year in a row Milan have something on the shortlist, as last year there was Simon Kjær who ended up in 18th place for his performances with Milan and Denmark. There are only 3 Serie A players in the 30-man shortlist, as in addition to Rafa and Mike, there is Dušan Vlahović.

6 Milan players in history won the Ballon d’Or before: Gianni Rivera (1969), Ruud Gullit (1897), Marco Van Basten (1988, 1989, and 1992), Geroge Weah (1995), Andriy Shevchenko (2004) and Kaká (2007). It’s difficult to imagine that Leão and Maignan would finish in the top of the list, obviously they will not win (Karim Benzema seems to be the clear choice), but it’s still an impressive feat.

The full 30-man shortlist, as announced today by France Football, is the following:

Mike Maignan (France/Milan)Antonio Rüdiger (Germany/Real Madrid)Bernardo Silva (Portugal/Man City)Christopher Nkunku (France/RB Leipzig)
Thibaut Courtois (Belgium/Real Madrid)Virgil van Dijk (Netherlands/Liverpool)Phil Foden (England/Man City)Cristiano Ronaldo (Portugal/Man United)
Trent Alexander-Arnold (England/Liverpool)Casemiro (Brazil/Real Madrid)Darwin Núñez (Uruguay/Liverpool)
João Cancelo (Portugal/Man City)Joshua Kimmich (Germany/Bayern Munich)Dušan Vlahović (Serbia/Juventus)
Kevin De Bruyne (Belgium/Man City)Erling Haaland (Norway/Man City)
Luka Modrić (Croatia/Real Madrid)Harry Kane (England/Spurs)
Fabinho (Brazil/Liverpool)Heung-Min Son (South Korea/Spurs)
Karim Benzema (France/Real Madrid)
Kylian Mbappé (France/PSG)
Luis Díaz (Colombia/Liverpool)
Mohamed Salah (Egypt/Liverpool)
Rafael Leão (Portugal/Milan)
Riyad Mahrez (Algeria/Man City)
Robert Lewandowski (Poland/Barcelona)
Sadio Mané (Senegal/Bayern Munich)
Sébastien Haller (Ivory Coast/Borussia Dortmund)
Vinicius JR (Brazil/Real Madrid)

Notify of

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

It really depends on worlds, but Benzema really deserves the throphy. Dollarumma won’t be nominated in the next 5 years either, minimum.


Yeah, it shows how bad PSG’s signings, so many stars with big money involved but only one of them on the list

Gbenga AJOSE

I saw this success coming for Leao..He is ust electrifying.


remember when i said 2-3 yrs ago that if any milan players’re gonna get nominated for ballon d’or, it’d be leao and donna? well, there u go. man i love being all the time sometimes.
cdk is awesome but dont sleep on adliesta. he’s zidane 2.0. you heard it here first