The 2018 Ballon d'Or award for best player of the year has come but not gone – at least not yet. And we all know that Real Madrid's Croatian midfielder Luka Modric was on Monday announced as the winner.
Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo were reportedly absent at the Ballon d'Or ceremony award night for obvious reasons of course.
But let us take you through some of the things about the 2018 Ballon d'Or winner that you didn't know about.
Below are six things you may not know about the 33-year-old midfielder:
- He was born in the village of “Modrici”, where he first put on a pair of boots.
- He wedded Vanja Bosnic in May 2010 in the Croatian capital of Zagreb in a private ceremony after dating her for four years.
- Modric has three children; son Ivano and two daughters Ema and Sofia.
- He was caught up in the “Croatian War of Independence” in 1991 when he was six years old. His grandfather was murdered in cold blood by the local Croatian Serb rebels when attending to the cattle. The family fled the area to live as refugees in a large hotel in Zadar.
- Carlo Ancelloti is his favourite manager. The Croat, since moving to Real Madrid in 2012, has worked under five managers namely Jose Mourinho, Ancelotti, Rafael Benitez, Zinedine Zidane and currently Santiago Solari but once admitted in an interview with BBC that the Italian remains his best manager he has played under. “We had a great relationship, we still have a good one, that’s why I would pick him,” claimed Modric on BBC on the Italian whom they won the Uefa Champions League and Copa del Rey with.
- Modric was charged with perjury for stating that he annexed his fee at an earlier date than he allegedly had in an embezzlement and tax evasion trial against the former Dinamo Zagreb executive Zdravko Mamic.
This article was most recently revised and updated 5 years ago