February 5 is the birthday of one of the greatest football players of all time and a player who was once touted as the heir to Lionel Messi.

Juventus talisman Cristiano Ronaldo and PSG star Neymar Junior celebrate their birthdays Friday, February 5. Both are incredibly important to their teams and both Juventus and PSG can be seen struggling when these players are unavailable.

Both have been in contention of the coveted Ballon d’Or with Ronaldo winning it five times. Neymar is yet to open his account on that front.

What are their chances of winning a Ballon d’Or in 2021?

Cristiano Ronaldo: Cristiano Ronaldo has had an incredible career and, despite his age, continues to create a storm in Serie A with Juventus. The Portuguese superstar has won five Ballon d’Ors in his decorated career and will want to draw level with arch-rival Lionel Messi with another individual award this year.

Also read: Is Cristiano Ronaldo’s tally of 760 goals really a world record?

Ronaldo was in contention to win the Ballon d’Or in 2020 and will have to battle against fierce competition to secure the coveted prize. Juventus are yet to hit their peak under Andrea Pirlo and rely heavily on Cristiano Ronaldo at the moment and pull the side across the finish line in the Serie A on a weekly basis.

Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi share an incredible rivalry and the Ballon d’Or has found a way to become a marker of greatness for the two modern-day legends. Ronaldo has already scored 15 goals in only 16 league fixtures this season.

All eyes will be on him to deliver another UEFA Champions League to become the frontrunner for the Ballon d’Or this year.

Neymar Junior: Neymar was considered Brazil’s shining light at a young age and was tipped to win the Ballon d’Or in the prime of his career. The Brazilian winger learnt from the best at Barcelona and tore La Liga alongside his partners in crime Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez. 

Neymar moved on to Ligue 1 and Paris Saint-Germain when he was at his peak and his performances have often slipped under the radar over the past few years. In 2020, however, the former Barcelona superstar rose to the occasion and nearly guided Paris Saint-German to their first UEFA Champions League trophy.

Also read: Neymar says he wants to stay at PSG

Neymar is unplayable at his best and has always been in contention to win the Ballon d’Or. The talented forward faces intense competition for the award this year, however, and will have to go a step further on the European front to win his first Ballon d’Or.