This Monday, leading lights from the world of football will converge on the Kongresshaus in Zurich to find out who will be crowned best player and coach in the men’s and women’s game of 2013. A large contingent of former stars will also be honouring the FIFA Ballon d’Or with their presence.
Although the spotlight will naturally be on award nominees Cristiano Ronaldo, Lionel Messi, Franck Ribéry, Nadine Angerer, Marta and Abby Wambach, the question of who will receive the two World Coach of the Year awards is also creating much interest. Will it be Sir Alex Ferguson, Jupp Heynckes or Jürgen Klopp in the men’s category? Can Pia Sundhage fend off Ralf Kellermann and Silvia Neid to retain the World Coach of the Year for Women’s Football award that she won last year? The tension is rising and decision time is drawing near.
In addition to the various awards, the FIFA Ballon d’Or show will offer many other highlights: having showcased major international artists of the calibre of Laura Pausini, James Blunt and Amy Macdonald in the past, this year’s event will feature the musical talent of Swiss-Brazilian rhythm and soul singer, Marc Sway, who will be giving the world premiere of his new single.
With the focus of this year’s FIFA Ballon d’Or firmly on the 2014 FIFA World Cup™ and hosts Brazil, pride of place at the awards ceremony in the Kongresshaus will be given to the main event of the summer as well as an array of Brazilian legends: with Pelé (1958, 1962 and 1970), Amarildo (1962), Carlos Alberto (1970), Bebeto (1994), Cafu (1994 and 2002) and Ronaldo (1994 and 2002) in attendance, Brazil’s five World Cup-winning teams will all be represented. Hosts Fernanda Lima and Ruud Gullit will guide the guests and viewers through the event from the Kongresshaus stage.