Ballon d'Or mess for duo
Lionel Messi (Getty Images)
Paris - Should Cristiano Ronaldo or Franck Ribery win the Ballon d'Or on Monday night, neither will be able to fully cash in on winning football's highest individual accolade.
According to Goal.com's website
, a deal between FIFA and sports apparel company Adidas, who sponsors Lionel Messi, could scupper any hopes Ronaldo or Ribery may have of using the Ballon d'Or image or likeness thereof for financial gain.
The reason for this is that both Ribery and Ronaldo are sponsored by Nike, who are Adidas' direct rivals.
Adidas currently hold the rights to use and promote Ballon D'Or merchandise along with any other FIFA-related promotional item until the 2030 World Cup
in a deal said to be worth $350 million.
Therefore, out of the three finalists, only Messi will stand to reap the full benefits of the award, should he win for a record fifth time, as he will be able to easily align himself with his current sponsors, who in turn, hold the commercial rights to the award.
Likewise, Adidas will stand to gain substantial profits from all Messi-related merchandise in the same way they did in 2013 when they produced a special edition boot to celebrate Messi's fourth Ballon d'Or.
The German company also confirmed that regardless of whether Messi picks up his fifth golden ball or not, that a new 2014 edition of his boot will be launched in March, which they say could boost sales from of €1.7 billion in 2012 to €2 billion in 2014.