French group and organizers of football most prestigious individual award, L’Équipe has on Monday 20th July 2020, announced that the 2020 Ballon d’Or has been cancelled.
In the shocking statement released a few hours ago by the French organisers, L’Équipe, the group said that after thoughtful consideration, there will be no 2020 Ballon d’Or edition, because it not all the conditions have been met, due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The statement from L’Équipe means, for the first time since 1956, the Ballon d’Or will be taking a break.
While one can understand all the reasons given, somehow, the group should have gone ahead with the 2020 Ballon d’Or award, since clubs have already found a way to continue playing even with the coronavirus. This will definitely not go down well with some players and clubs who have given their all before coronavirus and now.
See the complete statement from L’Équipe announcing that they are taking a break.
“The Ballon d’Or will not be awarded in 2020.
As the organizer of the Ballon d’Or, the Group L’Équipe, to which France Football belongs, decided not to award the most prestigious individual trophy there is in 2020.
Pascal Ferré, editor-in-chief of France Football :
« For the first time since 1956, the Ballon d’Or will take a break. There will be no edition in 2020, because it turns out, after thoughtful consideration, that all the conditions are not met. We believe that such a singular year cannot -and should not- be treated as an ordinary one.
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 ».