FIFA have drawn a final shortlist of three for The Best Men’s Player Award. The winner last year, Karim Benzema, is joined by World Cup winner Lionel Messi and Kylian Mbappe.
It was an eventful 2022. It was a year that produced several intrigues and drama that had the hair standing on our backs from plenty of blood-curdling excitement.
From the exciting Champions League knockout drama that Real Madrid produced to the unreal World Cup that saw Argentina become champions, it was a script that could not have been better written.
With all that drama behind us, the time has come for the guardians of football to choose the best of the gladiators. Several players truly lit up the scene and made it a memorable football year for the fans. The names of the actors in the never-ending chase for football immortality runs like a who-is-who in the sport.
FIFA have condensed the 14-man shortlist to three, and they will, in a few weeks, announce the winner of The Men’s Player of the Year Award. The three men vying for the honour are Karim Benzema, Lionel Messi and Kylian Mbappe.
FIFA will announce the winner of The Best Men’s Player Award on February 27, but the arguments are underway. The fans are already pitching behind their favourites as FIFA names its final three. Karim Benzema, Kylian Mbappe and Lionel Messi are the candidates vying for the prestigious award.
It will be an arduous task deciding the winner, as their performances last year will be a massive factor in making the decision. It will include the World Cup.
All three players had a phenomenal year leading to their clubs winning titles. They also won several individual laurels.
If the details of the individual performances are considered, the decision-making would be arduous. Like in the past, the titles won will be a criterion to determine the winner. This idea has negated players who have had an equally stunning year to miss out on the list. On this accord, one player stands above every other.
Messi, arguably the favourite to win the award, celebrated his first-ever World Cup victory last year. The PSG forward was instrumental in Argentina winning the Mundial in Qatar.
While Mbappe was defeated, his hat trick in the final capped off an impressive individual year for club and country. Mbappe became the second man to score a World Cup final hat-trick after George Hurst in 1966. He is also the youngest man to achieve the feat.
His France teammate Benzema, who was unable to compete in Qatar due to injury, celebrated a career milestone of his own, winning his first Ballon d’Or in October after a stellar season with Real Madrid.
The three world superstars were chosen from a list of 14 entries by an equal vote of national team coaches, captains, journalists, and fans.
There were no surprises in the male category, unlike the finalists for the Best Women’s Award, with Messi, Mbappe, and Benzema the standout performers between August 2021 and December 18, 2022.