Alexia Putellas has done it again! After becoming FC Barcelona's first ever winner of the women's Ballon d'Or in 2021, she has now on the coveted prize again!
She is the first-ever two-time winner of the honour, and in consecutive years.
Proud to get recompense
After receiving the trophy from the great Andriy Shevchenko, Putellas said "when I won a year ago I told myself I had to get even better and serve the team. I'd like to thank all my team-mates, the staff, president Joan Laporta, the board, everyone who works at the club and of course my family for always being at my side and for being a part of this prize. I'm proud to play for Barça, my lifetime club."
But she also had words about her difficult absence right now through injury. "When I got injured I didn't think I'd be here today, but it makes me proud to get recompense for all that hard work" she said. "I miss playing so much and doing what I like to do the most."
This was the fourth time that there has been an award not only for the best men's player in the world but also the best woman. Norway's Ada Hegerberg was the inaugural winner in 2018 and Megan Rapinoe of the US collected the trophy in 2019. After the 2020 edition was cancelled due to Covid-19, Alexia now has a record two wins to her name.
She is the first ever Catalan winner in either the men's or women's categories. The first Barça winner was Luis Suárez Miramontes back in 1960, while other blaugrana winners have been Johan Cruyff (1973 & 1974), Hristo Stoitckov (1994), Rivaldo (1999), Ronaldinho (2005) and Leo Messi (2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2015, 2019 & 2021).
Alexia was also named UEFA European Player of the Year for the second time earlier in the year.
Another great season
Alexia was a key feature of the brilliant Barça team that didn't manage to defend its Champions League trophy, losing the final to Lyon, but did complete a magnificent league and cup double in Spain without losing a single game, and also won the Spanish Super Cup.
She was the top scorer in the league with 18 goals, and also topped the UWCL charts with 11, all that despite playing in midfield, and was named MVP of the continental competition. This year she also received the highest distinction in Catalonian society, the Cross of Sant Jordi, but sadly missed out on the European Championships in England due to the knee injury that is still keeping her side-lined.