Ballon d'Or 2018: Luka Modric snaps Ronaldo-Messi dominance, crowned best soccer player on the planet

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Nearly four months after winning UEFA Men's Player of the Year, Real Madrid star Luka Modric was named the winner of the 2018 Ballon d'Or Award. The award was given out on Monday, and the Croatian superstar, as expected, took home the trophy after his ridiculously good 2018 campaign. 

Modric was arguably the best midfielder in the world all year long and enjoyed the best year of his career, beating Cristiano Ronaldo, Lionel Messi, Mohamed Salah and others in the process for the iconic Ballon d'Or trophy. 

Ronaldo and Messi were looked at as contenders, but it was hard to see either coming close to winning as they couldn't match the success that Modric achieved for his club and national team in 2018. On top of winning the Champions League for a third straight year with Real Madrid, Modric led Croatia to the World Cup final this summer in Russia, where the team fell to France 4-2 in the final. 

Modric becomes the first person since 2007 not named Messi or Ronaldo to win the trophy. Kaka of AC Milan won the award that year.

Real Madrid returns to the field on Thursday in the Copa del Rey at 10:15 a.m. The game can be viewed on fuboTV (Try for free).

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CBS Sports Writer

Roger Gonzalez is an award-winning writer based in Virginia that has covered pro soccer from Europe's top clubs to Argentina's first division. Roger started out his pro soccer writing career with Full Bio

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