After Argentina’s historic victory in the World Cup final last December, Lionel Messi was voted FIFA’s player of the year 2022 on Monday.
The South Americans won the match on penalties after a 3-3 stalemate after extra time in Qatar thanks to two goals from the 35-year-old forward against France.
“It’s incredible. It was a fantastic year, and I’m honored to be here tonight and get this award “, said Messi, who attended the ceremony at Paris’ Salle Pleyel while seated next to Kylian Mbappe, a striker for France and a teammate of Messi’s at Paris St. Germain.
Mbappe, who was also up for the night’s most anticipated prize, scored three goals in the World Cup final, but his performance was overshadowed by Messi’s successful defense of the most cherished trophy in football.
Without my teammates and (coach Lionel) Scaloni, I would not be where I am today, Messi continued.
“I eventually fulfilled a dream for which I had hoped for a very long time. Every player wants to accomplish it, and I was fortunate enough to do so. Very few individuals are able to do that.”
His colleagues Emiliano Martinez and Lionel Scaloni received the coach and goalkeeper of the year trophies, respectively. Their fans also received the greatest fans award, while England was recognized for their successful women’s Euro 2022 campaign.
The year’s top goalkeeper was Mary Earps, while Sarina Wiegman, the Netherlands coach of England, won the award for best coach of a team with Beth Mead, Lucy Bronze, Leah Williamson, and Keira Walsh among its four World 11 players.