FIFA World Cup 2018: Croatia’s Luka Modric wins Golden Ball award
Luka Modric has won the Golden Ball for the best player at the 2018 FIFA World Cup. (World Cup final blog)
The Croatia captain and Real Madrid midfielder inspired his side to the final for the first time in their history but was powerless to prevent Didier Deschamps’ men from taking the trophy 4-2 in Moscow.
Modric beat Belgium forward Eden Hazard and Antoine Griezmann, who claimed a winner’s medal after netting for Les Bleus in the final, to the prize.
FIFA’s Technical Study Group decided the winner of the award, which was given to Argentina’s Lionel Messi in 2014.
Past winners include Zinedine Zidane, Brazil great Ronaldo, Diego Maradona and Paolo Rossi.
Modric is also among the early favourites to win the 2018 Ballon d’Or later this year.