The Daily Star have used Football Manager to simulate the next ten Ballon d’Or winners, and the simulation had Dejan Kulusevski missing out on the award by a whisker in five years. 

The 66th edition of the prestigious Ballon d’Or award is set to take place next month, with Europe’s best player to be crowned at an official presentation ceremony on October 17.

Two Tottenham players in Harry Kane and Son Heung-min are among the 30 players nominated for the award while Hugo Lloris has been nominated for the Yashin Trophy, which is awarded to the best goalkeeper over the course of a campaign. (

The Daily Star have now run a simulation to predict the next ten Ballon d’Or award winners by updating the Football Manager 2022 database with the correct players, transfers, managers and competitions in-game.

The simulation predicts that Machester City’s Kevin De Bruyne will win it in 2023 followed by eight consecutive wins for Paris Saint-Germain’s Kylian Mbappe before Real Madrid’s Eduardo Camavinga finally breaks the Frenchman’s monopoly in 2031.

Interestingly, from a Tottenham perspective, the simulation suggests that Kulusevski will finish in second place behind Mbappe in 2027, and once again in 2030. 

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These predictions are not surprising given that Mbappe is already the next big superstar of the global game despite being just 23 years of age. 

However, the Ballon d’Or can be quite hard to predict as it usually goes to a player whose team has won the domestic league, the Champions League and perhaps an international tournament in any given year.

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