World Cup winner Lionel Messi edged Kylian Mbappe again, this time to take FIFA’s best men’s player award.

After steering Argentina to World Cup glory in an epic final against Mbappe’s France last year in Qatar, Messi won the best player vote against his PSG team-mate and Karim Benzema to secure the FIFA prize for a second time.

The 35-year-old forward scored two goals in the World Cup final, which Argentina won on penalties against France following a 3-3 draw after extra-time.

Messi was named player of the tournament at the World Cup, the first player to receive the award twice after winning the accolade at Brazil in 2014. He scored seven goals in Qatar, including a double in the final against France, and provided three assists. He also overtook German legend Lothar Matthaus as the World Cup’s record appearance holder.

At club level, Messi won Ligue 1 in his debut season with PSG and continues to work his magic in the domestic game.

He said: “It’s been a tremendous year and it’s an honour for me to be here and win this award. Without my team-mates I wouldn’t be here.

“I achieved the dream I had been hoping for for so long. Very few people can achieve that and I have been lucky to do so.”

Elsewhere, Emiliano Martinez’s World Cup heroics for Argentina saw him named the best men’s goalkeeper, while Argentina coach Lionel Scaloni beat Man City’s Pep Guardiola and Real Madrid boss Carlo Ancelotti to the Best FIFA Men’s Coach award.

Premier League stars Virgil van Dijk, Kevin De Bruyne, Casemiro and Erling Haaland were named in the men’s world XI alonsgide the likes of Messi, Mbappe and Benzema.




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