Ballon d'Or 2023 Power Rankings: Lionel Messi's lead is narrowing as Erling Haaland keeps closing in

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The race to win the Golden Ball is well and truly on, with the events of the Champions League knockout rounds having only intensified matters

The race for the 2023 Ballon d'Or race is heading towards its end, with some of the world's best footballers vying to succeed 2022 winner Karim Benzema in lifting the Golden Ball in Paris later this year.

It promised to be a unique Ballon d'Or battle, with the World Cup taking place in the middle of the 2022-23 campaign, meaning it could be a distant memory by the time votes are cast in August.

There is no doubt, however, that playing a starring role in Qatar has boosted some players' chances of competing for the Golden Ball, even with the Champions League knockout stages now in full swing.