Next week's Ballon d'Or title will be the 66th in the award's history and there have been four French players in history to receive the prestigious individual prize.

Real Madrid's Raymond Kopa was first in 1958, then came three consecutive titles for Juventus' Michel Platini between 1983-1985, Olympique de Marseille's Jean-Pierre Papin was next in 1991 with Juve's Zinedine Zidane the final French winner in 1998. Come Monday evening at Theatre du Chatelet, there may well be a new name added to the list of Ballon d'Or champions from the award's country of origin. 

Real's Karim Benzema produced arguably the best season of his career in 2021-22 with the Spanish giants winning their 14th UEFA Champions League, 35th La Liga and 12th Supercopa de Espana crowns at club level. On the international stage, Benzema celebrated his first silverware with France in the UEFA Nations League to complete his comeback after years away from Les Bleus following a well-documented blackmail scandal involving Mathieu Valbuena.

To say that Benzema was key to both Real and France's successes is an understatement given some of the goals he scored in some of the most important matches and in truth, it is hard to create an argument for any individual outside of the 34-year-old.