On Monday, Argentine Lionel Messi won the FIFA Men’s Player of the Year trophy again, defeating French forward Kylian Mbappe of Paris Saint-Germain and Norwegian forward Erling Haaland of Manchester City, who had won three straight titles.
Messi won the Ligue 1 championship with PSG alongside Mbappe after leading Argentina to the World Cup. He then moved to Major League Soccer franchise Inter Miami. Messi also won the men’s award in 2022.
With 10 goals to his credit, the 36-year-old helped Inter Miami win the 2023 Leagues Cup, a competition involving MLS teams and Liga MX teams in Mexico.
He was chosen as the greatest player by national teams coaches, captains, journalists, and fans.
Messi was not present when the trophy was accepted.
The men’s reward period began the day following the World Cup final in Qatar and ran from December 19, 2022, to August 20, 2023.
Haaland came in second in the poll, having scored 52 goals in 53 games across all competitions in the 2022–23 season, helping City win a quadruple of Premier League, FA Cup, and Champions League titles.
The 23-year-old lost out to Messi despite having the same number of points because fewer national team leaders gave him their first-place vote.
Pep Guardiola of City took up the Best Men’s Coach title. The Spaniard dedicated his prize to fellow nominees Simone Inzaghi and Luciano Spalletti. Prior to achieving the triple with City this season, he had accomplished the same feat at Barcelona in 2008–09.
After leading Inter Milan to the 2023 Champions League final, where they were defeated by City 1-0, Spalletti ended the team’s 33-year title drought with a Serie A victory with Napoli.
The Best women’s player of the year was chosen as Spain’s Aitana Bonmati, the 2023 World Cup champion.
After guiding England to the World Cup final, where they were defeated 1-0 by Spain, Sarina Wiegman was awarded the Best Women’s Coach title.
Mary Earps, who also won the Best Women’s Keeper Award, was one of her seven Lionesses who made the Women’s World XI.
The men’s winner was Ederson, the keeper for Manchester City, a Brazilian.