Virgil van Dijk’s Ballon d’Or Odds Continue To Shorten
Virgil van Dijk has long been the bookies’ odds-on favorite to lift the 2019 Ballon D’or, but his price continues to tumble following a very strong start to the 2019/20 season.
Liverpool’s defensive colossus, who won the PFA Player of the year award for his efforts last season, is now priced at just 1/4 (-400) with William Hill to claim the Ballon D’or, having shortened from 1/2 (-200) this week.
This puts him comfortably clear of the usual suspects – Lionel Messi is second in the betting, at 9/4 (+225) with the same firm, while Cristiano Ronaldo is next in line at 16/1 (+1600). It really does appear to be a one-horse race.
Why is Van Dijk Favorite?
Van Dijk was in pole position following his side’s Champions League triumph in June, and his record since has only strengthened his case.
Liverpool were the only team to win all four of their Premier League matches ahead of the opening international break of the season, and they picked up the Super Cup by beating Chelsea on penalties in Istanbul too.
The form of his national side can’t be harming his chances either. Netherlands were runners up in the inaugural UEFA Nations League in the summer, after losing the final to Portugal.
The Dutch have started 2019/20 well too; a 4-0 win over Estonia in a Euro 2020 qualifier isn’t especially notable, but a 4-2 win in Germany certainly is.
Latest Ballon D’Or Betting Odds
|Player||Odds (Fraction)||Odds (US)||Odds (Decimal)||Probability|
|Virgil van Dijk||1/4||-400||1.25||80%|
The Ballon D’or favorite is even being praised by former rivals. Speaking ahead of his testimonial, Vincent Kompany described van Dijk as the best defender to have ever played in the EPL.
The former Manchester City captain said: "I go back to players that really impressed me when I played against them, central defenders, I would bring it back to Virgil van Dijk.
“Being a defender is how you make your team more solid. The Liverpool before van Dijk and after - it is a completely different set-up.”
Perhaps most tellingly of all, Liverpool’s number four was recently presented with the UEFA Men's Player of the Year Award for 2018/19.
You have to go back to 2012/13 to find the last occasion where the winner of that trophy did not also win the Ballon D’or, as Franck Ribery was honoured by UEFA while France Football opted for Cristiano Ronaldo.
As both his club and his country go from strength-to-strength with him at the heart of their defences, it’s difficult to see anyone other than Virgil van Dijk being crowned as the best player in the world in 2019.