2023 at a glance

The Best FIFA Football Awards™ 2022

Following a year featuring the greatest-ever FIFA World Cup™, as well as exciting youth and club tournaments, the planet’s top players, coaches, legends, fans, goals and acts of fair play were recognised in Paris, France, at the seventh edition of The Best FIFA Football Awards™ in late February 2023.

In the wake of the Albiceleste’s astounding accomplishments in Qatar, there was a distinctly Argentinian flavour to the major men’s awards presented at the Paris gala. Meanwhile, England’s success at the UEFA Women’s EURO contributed to representatives from the Lionesses taking home two of women’s football’s top annual honours.

Alexia Putellas and Lionel Messi claim ultimate prizes

The ceremony in Paris saw Spain’s Alexia Putellas and Argentina’s Lionel Messi pick up The Best FIFA Women’s Player and The Best FIFA Men’s Player accolades respectively. This was the second successive year that midfielder Putellas, who scored 34 goals across all competitions in the 2021-22 season, had won the award. Meanwhile, hot on the heels of having fired Argentina to their third FIFA World Cup™ title, Messi was named The Best FIFA Men’s Player for the second time. In the process, Messi, who produced mesmeric performances for his nation in Qatar, moved level with Portuguese star Cristiano Ronaldo, as well as with Poland marksman Robert Lewandowski.

National-team coaches earn prestigious prizes

England manager Sarina Wiegman was recognised as The Best FIFA Women’s Coach for the third time. Dutchwoman Wiegman, who led the Lionesses to UEFA Women’s EURO 2022 glory, previously won the award in 2017 and 2020 on the back of her exploits in charge of her native country. Meanwhile, the men’s accolade went to Argentina tactician Lionel Scaloni. This was the first time that an Argentinian manager had won the award – deservedly so after the Albiceleste’s stunning success at the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022™.

Goalkeeping greats immortalised

Mary Earps and Emiliano Martínez were respectively crowned as The Best FIFA Women’s Goalkeeper and The Best FIFA Men’s Goalkeeper. Earps was outstanding for England at the UEFA Women’s EURO 2022, while Martínez played a pivotal role in helping Argentina to secure the most coveted prize in men’s football with his displays in November and December 2022.

Rest of The Best

2022 FIFA FIFPRO Men’s World11*

Goalkeeper: Thibaut Courtois (BEL – Real Madrid) Defenders: João Cancelo (POR – Manchester City/Bayern Munich), Virgil van Dijk (NED – Liverpool), Achraf Hakimi (MAR – Paris Saint-Germain) Midfielders: Casemiro (BRA – Real Madrid/Manchester United), Kevin De Bruyne (BEL – Manchester City), Luka Modrić (CRO – Real Madrid) Forwards: Karim Benzema (FRA – Real Madrid), Erling Haaland (NOR – Borussia Dortmund/Manchester City), Kylian Mbappé (FRA – Paris Saint-Germain), Lionel Messi (ARG – Paris Saint-Germain)

The Best FIFA Football Awards 2022 - Show

2022 FIFA FIFPRO Women’s World 11*

Goalkeeper: Christiane Endler (CHI – Lyon)

Defenders: Lucy Bronze (ENG – Manchester City/Barcelona), Mapi León (ESP – Barcelona), Wendie Renard (FRA – Lyon), Leah Williamson (ENG - Arsenal)

Midfielders: Lena Oberdorf (GER – Wolfsburg), Alexia Putellas (ESP – Barcelona), Keira Walsh (ENG – Manchester City/Barcelona)

Forwards: Sam Kerr (AUS – Chelsea), Beth Mead (ENG – Arsenal), Alex Morgan (USA – Orlando Pride/San Diego Wave)

The Best FIFA Football Awards 2022 - Show

* The clubs listed for the members of the FIFA FIFPRO Men’s and Women’s World11s are those that the players in question represented during the award period and thus may no longer be accurate.

FIFA Puskás Award

Amputee football star Marcin Oleksy won the 2022 FIFA Puskás Award for his astonishing scissor-kick goal for Warta Poznań in November 2022. The Pole’s jaw-dropping, acrobatic effort ensured that he joined the likes of Cristiano Ronaldo, Neymar and Zlatan Ibrahimović on the esteemed Puskás Award roll of honour.

The Best FIFA Football Awards 2022 - Show

FIFA Fair Play Award

Georgian footballer Luka Lochoshvili was honoured with the FIFA Fair Play Award for his life-saving intervention during an Austrian Bundesliga match. Lochoshvili – who was playing for Wolfsberger – acted decisively when Austria Vienna’s Georg Teigl was knocked unconscious following a collision, clearing Teigl’s airways after the defender swallowed his own tongue. Thanks to Lochoshvili’s actions, Teigl regained consciousness and was then treated at a local hospital. He has since made a full recovery.

FIFA Fan Award

Argentina supporters were honoured with the FIFA Fan Award in recognition of the impassioned backing that they gave their team at the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022. The Albiceleste fans travelled to the FIFA World Cup in their thousands and roared Lionel Messi and co on to a historic triumph. Head coach Lionel Scaloni and his Argentina players regularly hailed the inspirational effect of their followers’ vocal and unrelenting support.

The Best FIFA Special Award – Edson Arantes do Nascimento (Pelé)

The Best FIFA Football Awards 2022 also provided another opportunity for FIFA to pay homage to one of the greatest footballers that the game has ever seen – the peerless Pelé. In his opening address in Paris, FIFA President Gianni Infantino led the tributes to the three-time FIFA World Cup winner, who passed away on 29 December 2022. The FIFA President said: “Pelé is football, Pelé is simply football, and we lost him – we miss him a lot. But Pelé is eternal, he is with us; he is always with us. He will always be with us.”

The Best FIFA Football Awards 2022 - Show

Pelé’s widow, Marcia Aoki, accepted The Best FIFA Special Award in Paris, with the trophy aptly presented by Pelé’s fellow Brazilian FIFA World Cup winner Ronaldo. The only player to win the FIFA World Cup three times – in 1958, 1962 and 1970 – Pelé was a master of his art. He announced his arrival onto the world stage at the 1958 edition of the competition in Sweden, when, aged just 17, he scored six goals in Brazil’s last three games – the winner in the quarter-finals, a hat-trick in the semi-finals and a brace in the final. Pelé went on to notch 77 goals in 92 appearances for the Seleção. The prolific forward passed away aged 82; however, his iconic status, and his association with Brazil and the FIFA World Cup, will live on in perpetuity.

PARIS, FRANCE - FEBRUARY 27: Marcia Aoki, Widow to Pele, is presented with the Best FIFA Award by Ronaldo during The Best FIFA Football Awards 2022 on February 27, 2023 in Paris, France. (Photo by Aurelien Meunier/Getty Images)

It is a big honour to be here at this magnificent FIFA tribute to Edson. I have three words to say to God. God gave us Edson. My three words are: grateful, grateful and grateful.

Marcia Aoki

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