Thursday 01 December 2016, 13:54

Coutinho: The MSN trio are the world’s top three players

Philippe Coutinho believes The Best FIFA Men’s Player 2016 award should go to Lionel Messi, Neymar or Luis Suarez.

"My top three players in the world are the MSN trio," Coutinho told FourFourTwo. "Obviously there are others, at Real Madrid too, like Cristiano Ronaldo.

"But those three complete each other. One is fast, the other is skilful and then there is the top scorer. So they really complete each other."

The owners of Barcelona’s No9, 10 and 11 jerseys won the Spanish league and cup double this year. Neymar and Suarez have also played fundamental functions in Brazil and Uruguay sitting first and second in South America qualifying for the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia™, while Argentina have seized 12 points from a possible 15 when Messi has played.

A bushy-haired Coutinho and a shaven-headed Neymar helped Brazil win the South American U-17 Championship in 2009 and appeared in that year’s FIFA U-17 World Cup. They two remain close friends.

Messi, Neymar and Suarez – as well as Ronaldo – are among the 23 players hoping to win The Best FIFA Men’s Player 2016 prize. 50 per cent of the vote will be determined by the head coaches and captains of the world’s national teams. The remaining 50 per cent will be split between an online public ballot, which has now concluded, and a selected group of 200-plus media representatives.

The winner will be crowned at The Best FIFA Football Awards™ ceremony in Zurich on 9 January 2017.