Lionel Messi winning the 2021 Ballon d'Or raised eyebrows in certain circles, especially in the German media where many outlets described Messi’s victory as a 'scandalous choice’ according to Bild. Robert Lewandowski who has had two incredible years missed out on the award in 2020, as it was cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Despite that, Messi's 2021 included winning the Copa del Rey with Barcelona and the Copa America with Argentina. To go along with those titles Messi’s individual honors went from being LaLiga’s top scorer, the Copa America top scorer, Copa America top assister, and player of the Copa America.

Still one old adversary struck back on social media and voiced his disapproval of Messi winning the award, here is what former Real Madrid and Spanish national team goalkeeper Iker Casillas had to say.

Iker Casillas angry over Lionel Messi’s Ballon d'Or win

Iker Casillas, who played over 500 games for Real Madrid took to Twitter and stated, "I find it more and more difficult to believe in these football awards… For me, Messi is one of the five best footballers of all time, but they must start to take note of who is the best player in a given season. It's not that difficult. Others just make it difficult."

Much of the criticism of Messi winning the award stems that it was given as sort of a “thank you” to Messi for the great career he has had.  Lewandowski who’s past two years are worthy of a Ballon d'Or should have taken home the prize according to various media outlets. Nonetheless Messi’s year despite it being a down year for Barcelona, was exceptional individually.