Messi named FIFA player of 2023

Messi named FIFA player of 2023

LONDON — Argentine Lionel Messi retained the FIFA men’s player of the year trophy on Monday, beating Manchester City’s treble-winning Norwegian striker Erling Haaland and France’s Paris St Germain (PSG) forward Kylian Mbappe to the award.

Spain’s 2023 World Cup winner Aitana Bonmati was voted the best women’s player of the year.

Mr. Messi, who also secured the men’s award in 2022 after guiding Argentina to World Cup victory, clinched the Ligue 1 title with PSG alongside Mbappe following that success, before moving to Major League Soccer team Inter Miami.

The 36-year-old, voted the best player by national teams coaches, captains, journalists and fans, helped Inter Miami win the 2023 Leagues Cup — a competition between MLS and Mexico’s Liga MX sides — scoring 10 goals.

Mr. Messi was not present to collect the trophy.

The award period for the men’s prize ran from Dec. 19, 2022 to Aug. 20, 2023, and started the day after the World Cup final in Qatar.

Mr. Haaland, who helped City clinch a treble of Premier League, FA Cup and Champions League titles by scoring 52 goals in 53 matches across all competitions in the 2022-23 season, finished second in the voting.

The 23-year-old had the same points as Mr. Messi but lost out by having fewer first-place votes from national team captains.

City’s Pep Guardiola won the Best Men’s Coach award. The Spaniard, who before winning the treble with City last term had achieved the same feat at Barcelona in 2008-09, dedicated his award to fellow nominees Simone Inzaghi and Luciano Spalletti. Mr. Inzaghi guided Inter Milan to the 2023 Champions League final, where they lost 1-0 to City, while Spalletti won Serie A with Napoli to end the club’s 33-year wait for the title.

Sarina Wiegman claimed the Best Women’s coach prize after leading England to the World Cup final where they lost 1-0 to Spain.

Seven of her Lionesses were included in the Women’s World XI, including Mary Earps, who also took the Best Women’s Goalkeeper Award.

Brazil’s Manchester City keeper Ederson won the men’s award. — Reuters