**Ballon d’Or was created by the prestigious ‘France Football’ magazine to honour the best footballer in Europe in 1956, when the inaugural award was won by England’s Stanley Matthews. Soon, it became to be known as the highest honour in football.
**Though one of the biggest prizes in football, it was open only for players from Europe till 1995 when the rules were changed. It was made open to all Europe-based players and voted on by European journalists.
** In 2007, the Ballon d’Or changed in scope from an honour bestowed on Europe-based players by Europe-based journalists to one open to all players and voted on by journalists from around the world.
** In 2010 when it was merged with a similar award FIFA used to award – FIFA Player of the Year. The award came to be known as FIFA Ballon d’Or from 2010 to 2015. More importantly, voting was thrown open to national team coaches and captains from all countries.
** After FIFA pulled the plug on the deal earlier this year, France Football has decided to go back to the ‘journalist vote’ only policy.
** FIFA, meanwhile, will present The Best FIFA Football Awards in January, and were voted on in 2016 by journalists, coaches, players and the general public, with each group receiving 25 percent of the vote.
** More importantly, France Football will not name a 3-man shortlist as FIFA does for its award and the winner will be chosen from a 30-man shortlist. Also, the date was brought back to December, unlike January when FIFA was associated with it.
** The ceremony will take place on 12th December and start at 7PM GMT.