The most open secret in the world had been finally confirmed as Real Madrid and Portugal attacker Cristiano Ronaldo has officially won the 2016 Ballon d'or.
France football, organisers of the Ballon d'Or announced the winner of the award on Tuesday evening on its official Twitter page.
For weeks leading up to the announcement, Ronaldo had already been touted as the winner.
The Portuguese helped Real Madrid win the UEFA Champions League last season and also led Portugal to glory in the 2016 European Championship in France.
Ronaldo, 31, has previously won the award three times while Messi has won the award a record five times.
Ronaldo beat off competition from the likes of Lionel Messi, Gareth Bale, Neymar, Luis Suarez and Antoine Griezmann.
Messi led Barcelona to La Liga and Copa Del Rey glory and also helped Argentina to the final of the Copa America Centinario which they lost on penalties to Chile.
Antoine Griezmann was on the losing side in the finals of the Champions League and Euro 2016.
The top 20 in ranking from behind are: Toni Kroos, Luca Modric, Dimitri Payet, Robert Lewandowski, Paul Pogba, Arturo Vidal, Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Rui Patricio, Pierre Emerick Aubameyang, Gianluigi Buffon, Pepe, Jamier Vardy, Riyad Mahrez, Gareth Bale, Neymar, Luis Suarez, Antoine Griemann, Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo.