ZURICH — Cristiano Ronaldo has won the FIFA Ballon d’Or award for 2013, ending Lionel Messi‘s four-year run as the world’s best player.
Ronaldo scored 69 goals for Real Madrid and Portugal last year, and his stunning hat trick against Sweden in a decisive World Cup playoff was perhaps the defining individual performance.
“There are no words to describe this moment,” said Ronaldo, who was sobbing in tears after he accepting the trophy with his young son, also named Cristiano, beside him on stage.
He beat out Barcelona’s Messi and France winger Franck Ribery, who helped Bayern Munich to a sweep of major titles.
Germany dominated the other major trophies, with goalkeeper Nadine Angerer getting the women’s award ahead of United States forward Abby Wambach, last year’s winner, and Marta of Brazil.