Lionel Messi has been crowned the best men’s player at the 2022 The Best FIFA Awards after leading Argentina to World Cup glory in Qatar.
The boy from Rosario finally got his hands on the coveted international trophy at the fifth time of asking and was pivotal to his nation’s success in the winter. Messi amassed a staggering seven goals and three assists during the tournament, scoring in each knockout round – having never done so in his international career before Qatar – with his most memorable contribution being his brace in a dramatic final in Lusail.
The Albiceleste captain also picked up the Golden Ball award as the tournament’s best player, becoming the first player in history to receive the prize twice, having won it in Brazil in 2014. Messi is yet to win a team trophy with Paris Saint-Germain this campaign but has chipped in with a mammoth 33 goal contributions in 28 matches, as Christophe Galtier’s side sit eight points clear at the Ligue 1 summit.
Monday’s award is the second time Messi has won FIFA’s The Best men’s player since its rebranding in 2016, adding to his FIFA World Player of the Year award received back in 2009. His second win pulls him level with Cristiano Ronaldo (2016, 2017) and Robert Lewandowski (2020, 2021), who have shared all but one of the prizes, with only the 2018 edition awarded to a different player, Luka Modric.
Messi is the only player to score in the World Cup in his teens, 20s and 30s.
Having picked up FIFA’s esteemed individual award, Messi will be hoping to continue his fine form at club level when PSG host Nantes in the league on Sunday.