When you reach the top of the game and contribute to the greatest collectives the world has to offer, individual honours start to come your way.
With team trophies comes individual recognition and, in the case of truly special footballers over the years, come prestigious mantelpiece ornaments that very few will ever be awarded.
The Best FIFA Awards, running alongside the Ballon d’Or ceremony, were launched in 2016 and, since, it has become a global event that everyone watches with keen interest. Why? Well, only the best are involved.
Here’s how you can witness the ceremony and who will be keeping their fingers crossed on the night.
The ceremony will take place on the evening of February 27 2023, and can be streamed online for free via FIFA’s official YouTube channel.
There are six categories at The Best FIFA Awards, with both the men’s and women’s games seeing an outfield player, a goalkeeper and a coach being named the best in the world.
Below are the names that could be giving a speech…
The Best FIFA Men’s Player 2022 nominees
The Best FIFA Men’s Goalkeeper 2022 nominees
The Best FIFA Men’s Coach 2022 nominees
The Best FIFA Women’s Player 2022 nominees
The Best FIFA Women’s Goalkeeper 2022 nominees
The Best FIFA Women’s Coach 2022 nominees
Given its very recent inception, there have not been many recipients of the respective The Best FIFA Awards.
Among male players, Cristiano Ronaldo boasts the joint-most awards having won the first two The Best trophies, while Lionel Messi has won it once. Other recipients of the title are Luka Modric, who was awarded it in 2018, and Robert Lewandowski, who has won The Best FIFA Men’s Player Award for the previous two years on the bounce.
Five different goalkeepers have won The Best FIFA Men’s Goalkeeper Award since its launch in 2017 (there was no recipient in 2016), with Gianluigi Buffon, Thibaut Courtois, Alisson, Manuel Neuer and Edouard Mendy all claiming the prize.
Meanwhile, Claudio Ranieri claimed the inaugural The Best FIFA Men’s Coach Award courtesy of his miraculous 2015/16 season with Leicester, before Zinedine Zidane and Didier Deschamps picked up the next two awards. Since then, the trophy has gone exclusively to German coaches, with Jurgen Klopp winning twice before Thomas Tuchel picked it up last time out.
The USA has been the most successful country when it comes to The Best FIFA Women’s Player award, with Carli Lloyd and Megan Rapinoe winning in 2016 and 2019 respectively. Elsewhere, the prize has gone to Lieke Martens, Marta, Lucy Bronze and, most recently, Alexia Putellas.
The Best FIFA Women’s Goalkeeper Award only came into effect in 2019, with Sari van Veenendaal, Sarah Bouhaddi and Christiane Endler picking up the award to date.
Alongside Lewandowski, Sarina Wiegman could become the only person to take home three The Best trophies having claimed The Best FIFA Women’s Coach Award in 2017 and 2020 already. Elsewhere, Silvia Neid, Reynald Pedros and Jill Ellis have claimed the prize while its most recent recipient is Chelsea’s Emma Hayes, who is also nominated once again.