Maradona never received a Ballon d'Or; why?

only players from Europe could win the award prior to 1995.

Only players, regardless of nationality

who were engaged with European clubs were eligible between 1995 and 2007.

 Only since 2007 has it been available to all players

he inaugural Ballon d'Or winner was Stanley Matthews

who took home the trophy in 1956.

Only players from Europe could participate. 

from all clubs worldwide.