Messi, Rapinoe and Klopp win FIFA ‘The Best’ Awards

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Barcelona’s Lionel Messi and the USA World Cup winner Megan Rapinoe have been crowned players of the year at Fifa’s The Best awards, held at the stunning Teatro alla Scala.

With 21 of the 55 nominees playing in England, it was natural that the Premier League would dominate the men’s awards, but there was surprise as Messi beat Virgil van Dijk, who lifted the Uefa player of the year trophy, to the main prize.

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The Argentina forward collected his sixth Fifa title, to make him the outright record holder ahead of an absent Cristiano Ronaldo, who has won five. Messi helped fire Barcelona to the 2018-19 league title and a staggering 54 goals in 58 games no doubt helped swing the vote in his favour.

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Jürgen Klopp collected The Best men’s coach award, beating Mauricio Pochettino and Pep Guardiola.

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Rapinoe, who stole the show on and off the pitch at the World Cup, finishing with the golden ball, golden boot and World Cup trophy, while using her platform to challenge Donald Trump and push Fifa on investment, was, for once, “a little at a loss for words”.

“That very rarely happens to me, she said before thanking her teammates “who let me be a little bit wild at times but reel me in when needed”. She then, characteristically, used her platform as a call to arms.

The full list of the winners follows:

The Best FIFA Men’s Player

Lionel Messi (Barcelona/Argentina)

The Best FIFA Women’s Player

Megan Rapinoe (Reign FC/USA)

The Best FIFA Men’s Goalkeeper

Alisson Becker (Liverpool/Brazil)

The Best FIFA Women’s Goalkeeper

Sari van Veenendaal (Netherlands/Arsenal/Atlético Madrid)

The Best FIFA Men’s Coach

Jürgen Klopp (Liverpool)

The Best FIFA Women’s Coach

Jill Ellis (USA

FIFA Puskás Award

Daniel Zsori (Hungary)

FIFA Fan Award

Silvia Grecco

FIFA Fair Play Award

Marcelo Bielsa and the Leeds United squad

Via Gazzetta / AS / Guardian 

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