Bafana Bafana players with highest Ballon d’Or ranking EVER

Bafana Bafana players with highest Ballon d’Or ranking EVER
Credit: Icon Sport

Not any Bafana Bafana players made the 30-man Ballon d'Or 2023 shortlist released on Wednesday, 6 September 2023.

South Africa has produced quite a number of renowned footballers over the years; some have retired from the beautiful game while others are still very active in the domestic league and various leagues around the world.

At the moment, the face of Bafana Bafana players is Lyle Foster who plays for Premier League side Burnley.

Lyle Foster, key member of Bafana Bafana players
Credit: Icon Sport

Foster is a player full of immense potential and is developing his skills in the English top flight with talent enough to make a future 30-man Ballon d'Or nomination list.

While there are no Bafana Bafana players on the Ballon d'Or 30-man shortlist, four African players from four different countries on the continent cut.

They are Super Eagles forward Victor Osimhen, Andre Onana of Cameroon, Mohammed Salah of Egypt and Yassine Bounou of Morocco. These players had a brilliant 2022/23 season and duly had a place amongst the 30 candidates for the award.

Bafana Bafana players and the Ballon d'Or

Until 1995, the award was not open to non-Europeans, however, that changed in 1995 and it became a historic year for African football.

Ballon d'Or trophy
Credit: Icon Sport

George Weah of Liberia clinched the illustrious Ballon d'Or award in 1995 as he defeated German Jürgen Klinsmann to become the first and only winner of the award from Africa.

Since 1995 till date, various African players have been nominated and ranked for the award.

However, from the inception of the French Football award in 1956, no Bafana Bafana player has been nominated nor ranked for the prize. That's not to say the country has not produced good players, it's just that the players failed to make the cut.

The future holds good things in store for South African football, and their time will certainly come to have a player named among the 30 nominees for the prestigious France Football Award.

Karim Benzema is the current holder of the Ballon d'Or award. The next ceremony to present this renowned individual prize will take place on 30 October, in Paris, France.

Among the top contenders for the ultimate trophy, and the likely top three podium stars, are Lionel Messi, Erling Haaland and Kylian Mbappé.

This article was most recently revised and updated 9 months ago

Joseph is a freelance writer who spends most of his time writing engaging football contents. Based in Nigeria, Joseph is a die-hard Real Madrid fan with over 8 years experience in the sports betting space. He has covered football match previews, predictions, and news across leagues in Africa and Europe.