This Monday Zurich will play host once again to the 2014 FIFA Ballon d'Or awards banquet. And once again, Leo Messi is one of three finalists for the award. Messi has been a finalist for the last eight years in a row. Should Messi win, it would be his fifth time.
FC Barcelona's expedition—headed by Albert Soler, Director of Sporting Institutional Relations and Raul Sanllehí, Director of Football—is scheduled to take off from El Prat airport at 11.30am (CET). Team president Josep Maria Bartomeu will not travel to Zurich after the club announced that they had halted institutional relations with FIFA until the end of the sanctions that were recently upheld by the Court of Arbitration for Sport.
The Ballon d'Or ceremony begins at 6.15pm (CET) at the Zurich Kongreshauss. Also to be announced is the 2014 ideal eleven from FIFA/Fifpro, for which ten Barça players have been nominated. They include: Goalkeeper Claudio Bravo, defenders Gerard Piqué, Jordi Alba, Dani Alves and Javier Mascherano, midfielders Xavi Hernández and Andrés Iniesta, and forwards Leo Messi, Neymar, and Luis Suárez.