The 2018 Ballon d'Or victor was finally announced earlier today, with favourite Luka Modric winning by an absolute landslide and breaking the Cristiano Ronaldo-Lionel Messi stranglehold that had existed on the award for the last 10 years.
Five years ago, the Dinamo Zagreb youth product was voted as the worst signing of the season in La Liga after a slow start to life in the Spanish capital.
"I just want to thank all those who helped me to be here tonight, I thank my team-mates, my coaches, the staff and Real Madrid, all those who work there, the coaches and team-mates in the national team, the ones who voted for me and my family, which allows me to blossom as a person".
In addition, the Los Blancos midfielder has also ensured that Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo's 10-year hold of the award, was finally brought to an end on Monday night. Brazil star Neymar was third a year ago but only 12th this time.
Lyon's Ada Hegerberg was crowned the first ever female Ballon d'Or victor but the moment became shrouded in controversy when French DJ Martin Solveig - who was helping host the gala alongside David Ginola - asked the Norwegian to "twerk".
French disc jockey Martin Solveig appeared to embarrass Hegerberg when he asked her if she would "twerk" after she collected the trophy.
‘Only humans are eligible to win the award now’: Modric’s Ballon d’Or divides opinion online
Despite helping Barcelona canter to a domestic double last term, Lionel Messi could only muster a fifth place finish, his lowest ever finish since 2006 some 12 years ago, as Argentina crash out of the World Cup in the Round of 16.
Hegerberg is a three-time Women's Champions League victor with French side Lyon and scored a tournament-record 15 times last season.
France Football, which hands out the Ballon d'Or, and FIFA combined their awards to create the FIFA Ballon d'Or in 2010.
Ronaldo had won the previous two Ballon d'Or trophies but his exploits for club and country were not enough for him to win an unprecedented sixth title.
The outspoken 23-year-old Hegerberg said she won't play for Norway at the Women's World Cup in France next June. "I let them know, quite clearly, what I found wasn't working".
North and South Korea start landmark journey for railway reconnection
"President Trump asked me to forward to (Kim) these messages; he has a very friendly view of Chairman Kim Jong Un and likes him". Furthermore, he said he would be interested in inviting Kim to the USA for talks at "some point" in the future.
Trump praises Roger Stone's 'guts,' slams former lawyer for cooperating with Mueller
Trump slammed both Cohen and Mueller in a series of tweets shortly after Cohen pleaded guilty in federal court last Thursday. Trump added that Cohen "makes up stories to get a GREAT & ALREADY reduced deal for himself".
Modric wins the Ballon d'Or ahead of Cristiano Ronaldo and Griezmann
A World Cup year, though, resets the generally understood criteria to judge what it takes for a player to rise above his peers. His incredible goal in the final even made him the second teenager in history to score in a World Cup final.