Lionel Messi has been named FIFA’s Best Men’s Player after leading Argentina to World Cup victory in 2022.
Messi wins FIFA award ahead of Mbappe
Messi, 35, scored seven goals as Argentina won their third World Cup in Qatar. He has also been in fine form for Paris Saint-Germain this season, scoring 17 goals in all competitions, including the 700th of his career in the weekend’s win over Marseille.
“It’s incredible. “It’s an honor for me to be here tonight and receive this award,” Messi said.
“I wouldn’t be here if it weren’t for my teammates. It was an incredible year, and I finally realized a dream that I had hoped for for so long. It [the World Cup] is the best thing that has ever happened to me in my career.”
Mbappe misses FIFA’s Best Men’s Player
Messi assisted two goals in Ligue 1 for teammate Kylian Mbappe, who was also one of the final three nominees for The Best FIFA Men’s Player award.
Mbappe led the 2022 World Cup scoring with eight goals, including a hat-trick in the final as France lost on penalties to Argentina.
In 2022, he scored 56 goals in 56 games for club and country.
Messi and Mbappe sat together at the ceremony in Paris, with Messi cheering on Argentina head coach Lionel Scaloni as he received The Best FIFA Men’s Coach Award. Karim Benzema of Real Madrid did not attend the ceremony.
Benzema missed the World Cup with France due to injury, but he was a key player in Real Madrid’s 14th Champions League victory. With 88 goals, he is the fourth-highest scorer in Champions League history, trailing only Cristiano Ronaldo, Lionel Messi, and Robert Lewandowski.
Lewandowski, of Bayern Munich, had won the Best FIFA Men’s Player award the previous two years but did not make the final three this time.