Former winners Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi headlined the 11 players’ nominee shortlist for the Best FIFA Men’s Player of the Year award 2020. The list also contains Bayern Munich star Robert Lewandowski, who was top-scorer for Bayern in the Champions League (15) and also in the Bundesliga (34) and led the German team to both titles last season. Lewandowski, 32, was the favourite for the Ballon d’Or award until it was scrapped this year for the first time in its history due to the coronavirus pandemic. Lewandowski, however, is still the favourite to win the FIFA Best Men’s Player award. Cristiano Ronaldo, Lionel Messi, Robert Lewandowski Among 11 Nominees for Best FIFA Men’s Player Award.
The 11-member shortlist also has Champions League runners-up and PSG duo Neymar and Kylian Mbappe while Lewandowski’s former Bayern teammate Thiago Alcantara, who joined Liverpool in the summer, also found a place. Liverpool’s English Premier League winning trio of Mohamed Salah, Sadio Mane and Virgil van Dijk were also named as was Premier League Player of the Year and Manchester City star Kevin de Bruyne. See Full Awards Shortlist.
Best FIFA Men’s Player:
Thiago Alcantara (Spain / FC Bayern Munchen / Liverpool FC), Cristiano Ronaldo (Portugal / Juventus FC), Kevin De Bruyne (Belgium / Manchester City FC), Robert Lewandowski (Poland / FC Bayern München), Sadio Mané (Senegal / Liverpool FC), Kylian Mbappé (France / Paris Saint-Germain), Lionel Messi (Argentina / FC Barcelona), Neymar (Brazil / Paris Saint-Germain), Sergio Ramos (Spain / Real Madrid CF), Mohamed Salah (Egypt / Liverpool FC), Virgil van Dijk (Netherlands / Liverpool FC).
Like Lewandowski, his Bayern teammate and goalkeeper Manuel Neuer, who made a string of crucial saves to lead Bayern to their first Champions League title in seven years, was named in the Best FIFA Men’s Goalkeeper award shortlist. Liverpool goalkeeper Alisson Becker and Barcelona’s Marc-Andre ter Stegen are the other heavyweights in the six-member shortlist.
Best FIFA Men’s Goalkeeper:
Alisson Becker (Brazil / Liverpool FC), Thibaut Courtois (Belgium / Real Madrid CF), Keylor Navas (Costa Rica / Paris Saint-Germain), Manuel Neuer (Germany / FC Bayern München), Jan Oblak (Slovenia / Atlético de Madrid), Marc-André ter Stegen (Germany / FC Barcelona).
Liverpool coach Jurgen Klopp who led the Kops to their first Premier League title in 30 years headlines the Best FIFA Men’s Coach shortlist which also has Leeds United manager Marcelo Bielsa. Bayern Munich coach Hansi Flick, Julen Lopetegui, who led Sevilla to the Europa League title was also named in the nominee list.
Best FIFA Men’s Coach:
Marcelo Bielsa (Argentina / Leeds United FC), Hans-Dieter Flick (Germany / FC Bayern München), Jürgen Klopp (Germany / Liverpool FC), Julen Lopetegui (Spain / Sevilla FC), Zinedine Zidane (France / Real Madrid CF)
Barcelona talisman Lionel Messi has won the Best FIFA Men’s Player award six times which is the most number of times a player has won the award. Ronaldo is second with five awards. Shortlists and nominees for a total of seven individual awards were revealed by FIFA on Wednesday. The three finalists for each award will be announced on December 11 while the awards ceremony is scheduled to take place on December 17. The awards ceremony will be held virtually this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
(The above story first appeared on LatestLY on Nov 25, 2020 05:09 PM IST. For more news and updates on politics, world, sports, entertainment and lifestyle, log on to our website latestly.com).