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[Awards Review]








▶ Lionel Messi wins The Best FIFA Men's Player Award [2024/01/22   ]

Lionel Messi has been crowned The Best FIFA Men’s Player 2023, retaining the title he won in 2022.

The Argentina superstar has been bestowed with the honour once again following another qualifying period where he dazzled football fans across the globe. Messi was recognised for his achievements at The Best FIFA Football Awards™ ceremony in London, having come out on top in the voting ahead of finalists Erling Haaland and Kylian Mbappe.

Messi topped an incredibly closely-contested poll which was voted for by national team coaches and captains as well as expert journalists and supporters across the globe.

With the 2022 World Cup winner and Norway international Haaland locked together on 48 scoring points, they were separated by the number of first-choice nominations which Messi received in votes from national team captains, as per the Rules of Allocation (article 12). France striker Mbappe finished third with 35 points.

View the full The Best FIFA Men's Player voting breakdown here.

Messi also won the 2019 Best FIFA Men's Player award and was recognised by FIFA as the leading player in the men's game on five occasions prior to that - 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012 and 2015 - making this his eighth individual award in total.

The winner in focus

Messi is a player who has won everything, claiming an extensive haul of major domestic, international and individual honours to place himself firmly in the category of an all-time great of the beautiful game.  

La Pulga Atomica was named The Best Men's Player in 2022 after leading Argentina to FIFA World Cup™ glory in Qatar, and he added further silverware to his trophy collection in 2023 as PSG once again topped the table in France as Ligue 1 champions.

The 36-year-old's two-year spell in Paris came to an end in July, with the all-time top scorer in the top five European leagues heading across the Atlantic for the latest chapter of his career with Inter Miami.
Messi's standout moments

In helping PSG to another domestic title - a second in succession during his spell in France - Messi recorded more assists than any other player during the campaign and was subsequently named in the Ligue 1 Team of the Season.

Fresh from lifting the World Cup in Qatar, Argentina were swiftly back onto the qualification trail for the FIFA World Cup 26™, with the CONMEBOL campaign getting under way in September 2023. Prior to that, Messi bagged the 100th goal of his international career in a 7-0 friendly romp against Curacao in March, becoming just the third male player to reach the milestone after Iran's Ali Daei and Portugal icon Cristiano Ronaldo.

After departing PSG in the summer, Messi - almost inevitably - made an instant impact on his debut with his new side Inter Miami. With the clock deep into added time, and the score locked at 1-1 in their Leagues Cup encounter with Mexican side Cruz Azul, the MLS outfit were awarded a free-kick 25 yards out in a central position. There was only one man who would take it. There was only one outcome. Messi's wand of a left foot directing an unstoppable effort into the goalkeeper's top-right corner.  

What they said about Messi

"If I told you the things he does in training you wouldn't believe me. He's crazy. I told Leo that as long as he’s happy on the pitch, he should continue playing as long as he can. He showed us that there are no limits in football, and that is amazing."
Lionel Scaloni, Argentina head coach

"One of the reasons why we bought him was to inspire the next generation of soccer players in America, to want to be soccer players. So bringing him does that and it's an important thing for us. Someone like that changes the game. Someone like that inspires another generation of soccer players."
David Beckham, Inter Miami co-owner

"Brother… it didn't turn out as we thought but we tried everything. It was a pleasure to share two more years with you. Good luck in your new stage and be happy. I love you."
Neymar, former Paris Saint-Germain team-mate

How The Best FIFA Men’s Player Award winner was determined

    From the 12-player shortlist, each voter made their first, second and third choices for the prize.

    Points were given to nominees depending on where they were placed (five points for first, three for second and one for third).

    Nominated national team captains could not vote for themselves.

    Selections from the four voting groups – coaches, captains, journalists, and fans – each counted for 25 per cent of the total vote, irrespective of the number of voters from each group.

    The Best FIFA Men’s Player Award was presented to the individual with the most points.

    If finalists were tied on points, the individual with the most first-choice selections from their own group of voters would be declared the winner.

The voting procedure for The Best FIFA Men’s Player Award was supervised by independent observers. Results will be published in full on FIFA.com following the awards ceremony on 15 January 2024.

- The origianl text resource is from FIFA Official Website

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