The prestigious Ballon d’Or has been canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic, organizers confirmed on Monday.
“There will be no edition in 2020, because it turns out, after thoughtful consideration, that all the conditions are not met,” said Pascal Ferré, the editor of France Football.
Awarded annually by France Football magazine, Ballon d’Or is given to the best performing football players of each year.
Barcelona’s Argentine forward, Lionel Messi, has won the award more than any other player in history, having been named the best player six times in his career. Juventus’ Portugal forward Cristiano Ronaldo has won it five times.
The two are largely considered the best players of the decade.
“It’s such a strange year that we couldn’t treat it as an ordinary one. Let’s say that we started talking about (making the decision) at least two months ago,” said Ferré.
“It isn’t a decision we took lightly but we had to accept it couldn’t be a normal or typical Ballon d’Or winner, and what really worried us it that it wouldn’t be fairly awarded.”
The announcement comes as top European Leagues across Europe are ending following a resumption of action after weeks of suspension.
Germany’s Bundesliga ended on 27 June while Spain’s La Liga ended on Sunday, with Real Madrid crowned champions. The English Premier League is expected to end on July .