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Luka Modric wins Ballon d’Or!

Real Madrid and Croatia star Luka Modric became the first new Ballon d’Or winner in 10 years.

The 33-year-old ended Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi’s dominance following a stellar year for club and country.

Modric won the UEFA Champions League for a third consecutive time with Real Madrid in May and then played a pivotal role in Croatia’s World Cup route to the final.

Following a vote by 180 journalists, he secured 753 points compared to Ronaldo (453) and Antoine Griezmann (414), who came in at second and third respectively.

“The Ballon d’Or was more than a dream. I simply cannot believe it. For all my career, I have tried to work hard and have persistence. In the tough moments, you have to show your courage and I always said the best things do not come easy. To achieve all this, it has not been easy.

‘But sooner or later, you get an opportunity and when it comes, you have to be ready to take it. I am still trying to take it on board that I have won this and become part of a group that belongs to history. It is a unique feeling,” he said after winning the coveted award.

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