The 2019 FIFA FIFPro Men’s and Women’s Players of the Year were announced at a gala celebration held at the Teatro all Scala in Milan on Monday evening.
Lionel Messi beat off competition from Juventus’ Cristiano Ronaldo and Liverpool’s Virgil van Dijk to take the Men’s award. The FIFA Awards became a stand-alone event in 2016 and Cristiano Ronaldo took home the first two trophies. Last year the winner was Real Madrid and Croatia midfielder Luka Modric.
Messi won the World’s Player of the Year award in 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, and 2015 when it was presented jointly as the FIFA/Ballon d’Or.
A separate award again, the Ballon d’Or winner will be announced in Paris on December 2 and it looks like a battle between Messi and UEFA Player of the Year, Virgil van Dijk.
The Women’s award went to Megan Rapinoe who added the title of the Best Women’s Player for 2019 to her Golden Ball and Golden Boot trophies from the Women’s World Cup.
Lucy Bronze, winner of the World Cup Silver Ball and the UEFA Women’s Player of the Year and Alex Morgan, the World Cup Silver Boot winner made up the trio of nominations. A year ago Marta won the female honor.
Six other individual winners were announced along with the Fair Play Award and the FIFA FIFPro Men’s and Women’s Best 11 during the evening’s proceedings.
The two coaching awards went to Liverpool’s Jurgen Klopp and twice Women’s World Cup winner, Jill Ellis of the United States.