Paris, (His). FIFA World Cup-winning Argentine legend Lionel Messi was honored with the prestigious Ballon d’Or award for the eighth time in his illustrious career on Monday night.
With this award, Messi became the first Major League Soccer (MLS) player to win this prestigious award. Messi represents the club Inter Miami.
The award was presented to Messi by none other than Inter Miami owner, English football icon David Beckham.
He had previously won the award in 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2015, 2019 and 2021.
Messi, whose career spanned nearly 30 years, was left heartbroken after the 2014 World Cup defeat and eight years later, he unleashed his inner Maradona and brought back the most prized possession – the World Cup trophy – to his homeland Argentina. Saved myself. In the World Cup tournament, he played an important role in making his country the world champion by scoring seven goals.
Apart from this, Messi won the Laureus Award for Best Male Athlete of 2022, leaving behind class athletes like Rafael Nadal, Kylian Mbappe and Stephen Curry.
This was the second time Messi won the Laureus – considered the sports Oscar, before in 2020 Messi first shared the award with British Formula 1 driver Lewis Hamilton.
Messi was also honored as the Best Men’s Player during the Best FIFA Football Awards ceremony in February.
Aitana Bonmati, Spanish footballer representing FC Barcelona and winner of the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup, received the Women’s Ballon d’Or, presented by Serbian tennis legend Novak Djokovic. She was also the best player in the above tournament.
Manchester City won the title of ‘Club of the Year’. In the season 2022–23, the club won the treble, i.e. Premier League, FA Cup and UEFA Champions League. They also captured the UEFA Super Cup this year.
Manchester City star striker Erling Haaland was awarded the ‘Gerd Muller Trophy’ for the best striker of the year. Haaland secured a treble with Manchester City by winning the Premier League, FA Cup and UEFA Champions League in the 2022–23 season.
Haaland began an impressive goalscoring spree with a total of 56 goals in a single season, which was also his first season with City. He also broke the record for most goals by a Premier League player in all competitions in a season.
The ‘Yachin Trophy’ for the Best Goalkeeper of the Year was awarded to Aston Villa FC and Argentina’s FIFA World Cup 2022-winning star Emiliano Martínez.
20-year-old English midfielder Jude Bellingham, currently playing for Spanish giants Real Madrid, was given the ‘Copa Trophy’ for the best under-21 player. He previously played for German giants Borussia Dortmund.
Vinicius Junior, the Brazilian winger representing Real Madrid, was given the ‘Socrates Prize’ for founding the Instituto Vinicius Junior for the education of young Brazilians through sports and technology.
FC Barcelona was awarded the Women’s ‘Club of the Year’ award.
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