The Ballon d’Or, or the “Golden Ball” is an annual football award presented by France Football. The Ballon d’Or has been an award since 1956, although between 2010 and 2015, an agreement was made with FIFA and the award was temporarily merged with the FIFA World Player of the Year, and is now known as the FIFA Ballon d’Or. However, the partnership ended in 2016 and the award was reversed back to Ballon d’Or.
The Ballon d’Or award honors the male player deemed to have performed the best over the previous year and is based on votes submitted by football journalists. Initially, it was an award for players from Europe. However, In 1995 the Ballon d’Or was expanded to include all players from any origin that have been active at European clubs. The award became a global prize in 2007 with all professional footballers from around the world being eligible.