FIFA The Best 2023 awards live results, winners as they’re revealed; Lionel Messi expected at Paris football ceremony

The best players and coaches from last season (2021/22) will be honoured at the FIFA The Best awards ceremony taking place on Monday, February 27 in Paris and streamed around the world. 

This event will be the seventh edition of the FIFA The Best awards, which have been taking place since 2016 after world governing body FIFA opted to establish its own awards following years of attaching its name to the prestigious Ballon d’Or awards run by French publication France Football. The Ballon d’Or, the FIFA The Best awards, and the Globe Soccer awards are recognised as the most coveted annual global football honours. 

Voting for the FIFA The Best men’s awards was based on performances between August 2021 and December 2022 to incorporate the FIFA men’s World Cup which concluded in December. The women’s awards voting was based on competitions taking place between August 2021 to July 2022, taking into account last summer’s Euro 2022 and Copa America 2022 tournaments.

There are 10 award categories in total (see below), including the FIFPro World 11 all-star teams for men and women. Expect some other awards to be part of the ceremony; last year we also saw a FIFA Lifetime Achievement award (to Canada’s Christine Sinclair) and a special recognition to Cristiano Ronaldo for setting the men’s all-time international scoring record.

The Sporting News will be following the FIFA The Best awards live and provide updates, winners, and voting totals below throughout the day. The event kicks off at 21:00 CET (15:00 ET / 20:00 GMT) on Monday, and a free live stream will be available on FIFA+.

MORE: Ballon d’Or award results from October 2022

FIFA The Best live awards updates from Paris

21:28 CET / 15:28 ET / 20:28 GMT: Next up is The Best men’s goalkeeper. Eniola Aluko and Julio Cesar present the trophy to Argentina and Aston Villa goalkeeper Emiliano ‘Dibu’ Martinez.

21:23 CET / 15:23 ET / 20:23 GMT: It’s time for the first of the awards. The Best women’s goalkeeper. Canadian Stephanie Labbe and legend Didier Drogba do the honours, announcing that the winner is: England’s and Manchester United’s Mary Earps.

“I wouldn’t have worn this dress if I knew this was going ot happen. I don’t know what to say. Thank you for everyone who voted for me. I feel very honoured to be holding this really heavy trophy.”

She thanks her coaches, her national team manager, and her loved ones who helped her get up off the kitchen floor a few years back. And she sends a message: “Anyone who’s ever been in a dark place, just know there’s light at the end of the tunnel.”

21:19 CET / 15:19 ET / 20:19 GMT:There’s now a special live performance by Seu Jorge with photos of Pele in the background. The tune is based on David Bowie’s Changes. That’ll go down as one of the highlights of night. Beautiful performance.

21:15 CET / 15:15 ET / 20:15 GMT: Pele’s wife, Marcia Aoki comes onto the stage and receives a FIFA The Best honour (though Ronaldo holds on to the trophy because “it’s heavy.”

“It’s a big honour to be here at this mangificent FIFA tribute to Edson Pele,” Aoki said. “I have three words to say to God … And my three words are Grateful. Grateful. And grateful.”

21:12 CET / 15:12 ET / 20:12 GMT: Ronaldo ‘O Fenomeno’ comes up to the stage to share some words about Pele.

21:00 CET / 15:00 ET / 20:00 GMT: FIFA president Gianni Infantino takes the mic and welcomes the crowd and television/streaming audience. He also remembers those who passed away in the last year: Pele, Sinisa Mihailovic, and Gianluca Vialli.

Pele’s family is in attendance. “Pele is eternal. He is with us and will always be with us,” Infantino says leading into a Pele video.

20:45 CET / 14:45 ET / 19:45 GMT: Lionel Messi, Kylian Mbappe, Yassine Bounou, Dimitri Payet, Alexia Putellas, and Gianni Infantino walk the red carpet (actually a green carpet). The start of the show nears.

20:42 CET / 14:42 ET / 19:42 GMT: This is really shaping up to be Argentina’s night. It’s even more clear when you have two Brazilians (Richarlison and Ronaldo) stating that “Argentina deserves the awards.”

20:39 CET / 14:39 ET / 19:39 GMT: More celebrity arrivals: Didier Drogba and Arsene Wenger.

20:35 CET / 14:35 ET / 19:35 GMT: The red carpet interviews continue. Dibu Martinez, who could be the first Argentine ‘keeper named best in the world, says he wants Argentina to sweep all four awards tonight (including the fan award).

And about Scaloni’s contract extension? “Without him, there’s no Scaloneta,” Martinez said in reference to the popular nickname of the Argentina team under Scaloni.

20:19 CET / 14:19 ET / 19:19 GMT: Ex-Argentina player Esteban Cambiasso is asked whether the World Cup or the Champions League (by Real Madrid) should weigh more heavily on The Best awards. Cambiasso doesn’t hesitate: “We have the Champions League every year … generally the World Cup has always been more decisive for individual awards in a World Cup year.”

20:11 CET / 14:11 ET / 19:11 GMT: More news emerging from Paris. Lionel Scaloni has extended his stay at the helm of Argentina until 2026 and former Albiceleste international Maxi Rodriguez is over the moon. “It’s big news to continue the project … If he decided to continue, it’s because he’s happy and he wants to continue with this group of players.”

20:09 CET / 14:09 ET / 19:09 GMT: Jermaine Jenas and Samantha Johnson are the hosts of the ceremony from Paris. Although the ceremony is happening in calendar year 2023, these are technically being called the 2022 The Best awards.

19:53 CET / 13:53 ET / 18:53 GMT: Given this event is a who’s who of football, there’s bound to be news coming out of Paris. How about CONMEBOL president Alejandro Dominguez reportedly saying “We’re going to win the World Cup 2030 bid” in reference to the joint South American proposal to host the event.

19:34 CET / 13:34 ET / 18:34 GMT: Here are the stats comparing the three finalists for the men’s award. Mbappe has the most goals, but Messi the most assists, most chances created, most big chances created, and highest expected assists.

It’s a reflection of how his game evolved into more of a facilitator in 2021/22, although he scored his fair share of goals in the World Cup.

19:27 CET / 13:27 ET / 18:27 GMT: But here’s Lionel Messi’s seat reservation. He’s apparently going to be there.

19:25 CET / 13:25 ET / 18:25 GMT: Confirmation of the red carpet in the photo below thanks to Sky’s Florian Plettenberg. No Ancelotti or Benzema on hand tells you all you need to know about the men’s player and men’s coach awards.

MORE: The big differences between the Ballon d’Or vs. FIFA The Best awards

FIFA Player of the Year (Men’s)


  • Karim Benzema (Real Madrid / France)
  • Kylian Mbappe (PSG / France)
  • Lionel Messi (PSG / Argentina)

The expectation here is that Lionel Messi adds this trophy to the FIFA World Cup he won in December with Argentina and the World Cup Golden Ball as the best player in the tournament. Messi was also one of PSG’s key players in their run to the French Ligue 1 title.

Kylian Mbappe had a strong 2022 himself, winning the Ligue 1 title alongside Messi, and also capturing the Ligue 1 top scorer title, as well as the 2022 World Cup Golden Boot.

Karim Benzema finished as the top scorer in both La Liga and the UEFA Champions League, as he led his club side Real Madrid to both titles, before missing out on the World Cup with France due to injury.

Getty Images

MORE: All the results from last year’s FIFA The Best awards

FIFA Player of the Year (Women’s)


  • Beth Mead (Arsenal / England)
  • Alex Morgan (San Diego / USA)
  • Alexia Putellas (Barcelona / Spain)

England’s Beth Mead would appear to be the frontrunner given her exploits at Euro 2022, leading her country to the title while claiming the Golden Boot and player of the tournament awards.

Alexia Putellas, last year’s The Best winner, led Barcelona to domestic titles and to a UEFA Champions League final, but she missed out on Euro 2022 with Spain due to an ACL injury in the lead-up to the tournament.

Alex Morgan, who finished second in 2019 for this award, was the NWSL’s leading scorer and continued to shine for the USA in reaching 200 caps. 

FIFA Puskas Award


The three finalists include a stunning scissor kick by Polish amputee player Marcin Oleksy, another in the 2022 World Cup by Brazil’s Richarlison, and a long-range side-footed volley from Dimitri Payet in the UEFA Conference League.

FIFA Goalkeeper of the Year (Men)


  • Yassine Bounou (Sevilla / Morocco)
  • Thibaut Courtois (Real Madrid / Belgium)
  • Emiliano Martinez (Aston Villa / Argentina)

This is going to be a tight battle because all three finalists can make a case for winning it.

Yassine Bounou, voted La Liga’s best ‘keeper in 2021/22, backstopped the top defense at the 2022 World Cup in leading Morocco to a shock run to the semis. Dibu Martinez was the top goalkeeper at the World Cup for the champions; and Thibaut Courtois was the star of the 2022 Champions League final in addition to winning La Liga with Real Madrid.

Martinez would project to be the winner, with Bounou close behind. The UCL final performance by Courtois was memorable, but he arguably needs more to beat out the other two.

FIFA Goalkeeper of the Year (Women)


  • Ann-Katrin Berger (Chelsea / Germany)
  • Mary Earps (Man United / England)
  • Christiane Endler (Lyon / Chile)

Ann-Katrin Berger helped Germany reach the Euro 2022 final and led Chelsea to a domestic double, all while undergoing treatment for thyroid cancer. 

Mary Earps helped England win Euro 2022 and was voted goalkeeper of the tournament. Last year’s FIFA The Best goalkeeper Christiane Endler led Lyon to the French league title and Champions League crown.

This will be another tight vote with three deserving candidates. It remains to be seen whether the major international trophies won by Earps and Endler will overcome Berger’s professional and personal accomplishments. 

FIFA Coach of the Year (Men)


  • Carlo Ancelotti (Real Madrid)
  • Pep Guardiola (Manchester City)
  • Lionel Scaloni (Argentina)

This award will come down to which trophies are deemed by voters to represent the greatest accomplishment. For that reason it’s hard to believe that Argentina boss Lionel Scaloni will not be the one to hoist this trophy after winning the FIFA World Cup with Argentina. 

Carlo Ancelotti led Real Madrid to the La Liga and UEFA Champions League double, and Pep Guardiola claimed the Premier League title and a run to the Champions League semis, but those accomplishments would seem to pale by comparison to the enormity of guiding a team to a near-record undefeated streak (36 matches) and a world title.

Lionel Scaloni World Cup Mundial Qatar 2022 Argentina

(Getty Images)

FIFA Coach of the Year (Women)


  • Sonia Bompastor (Lyon)
  • Pia Sundhage (Brazil)
  • Sarina Wiegman (England)

It would be a shock if Sarina Wiegman didn’t claim this honour after the Dutch coach led England to a first major trophy at Euro 2022.

But Sonia Bompastor arguably did the best work of 2021/22 in her first full season as manager by leading Lyon to a French league title and UEFA Champions League triumph. Pia Sundhage’s Brazil side dominated en route to a Copa America triumph, but that dominance is expected. 

FIFA Fair Play Award

According to FIFA, the Fair Play award will honour one recipient — a fan, team, player, coach, federation or other collection of individuals — who “displayed exemplary behaviour which promoted the spirit of the game throughout the year.”

In essence, this award recognises gestures of sportsmanship, fairness, and other good deeds around the sport.

FIFPro World 11

The Best 11 of 2022 for both men and women are voted on by nearly 25,000 players from 68 countries around the world via FIFPro (detailed voting rules for the men and women).

The Men’s and Women’s World 11 will be made up of one goalkeeper and three defenders, three midfielders and three forwards. The final player is the next one receiving the most votes.

FIFA Fan Award


  • Abdullah Alsulmi
  • Argentina fans
  • Japanese fans cleaning stadiums

The Fan Award has been around since the launch of the annual FIFA The Best honours, and as the name suggests, it recognises fans for an exceptional moment or gesture. It’s an award for the fans, voted on by the fans (official voting rules). 

Among the finalists this time is Abdullah Alsulmi spent 55 days walking across the Arabian Desert from Jeddah to Doha to watch Saudi Arabia at the 2022 World Cup. It seems unfair that he is up against all the Argentina fans who traveled to Qatar, and the group of Japanese fans who cleaned the stadiums before leaving. 

If either of the larger fan groups wins the award, it’ll be interesting to see who actually claims the trophy.

FIFA The Best live stream, TV channel

The Best award ceremony from Paris, France will be live streamed for free around the world on FIFA+. The live stream can be accessed here.

Other streaming platforms will carry the event in select regions of the world: 

  • USA: fuboTV, Universo NOW, Fox Sports site/app, Telemundo Deportes en Vivo 
  • South America: Star+, DirecTV Sports app
  • Central America & Mexico: ViX, Star+
  • Europe: TDP, TV2 Play, Ziggo Sport (Netherlands), fuboTV (Spain), (Spain), (Russia), (Russia)

MORE: Has Ronaldo or Messi ever won a Puskas award?

As of the time of publication, a select group of TV broadcasters from around the world have confirmed they will carry the ceremony on live television. LiveSoccerTV has the list and it includes the following: 

  • USA: FS2 (English), Universo (Spanish), fuboTV live stream
  • South America: DirecTV Sports, ESPN, Star+, TyC (Argentina), SporTV (Brazil), Canais Globo (Brazil)
  • Central America & Mexico: ViX, Star+, ESPN Norte
  • Europe: TDP, TV2 Sport, Ziggo Sport (Netherlands), fuboTV (Spain)

The live stream on FIFA+ would be the best way to watch it in regions of the world where a broadcast partner is not covering the event.

FIFA+ is available to download on Android and iOS devices, on select connected TVs, and online at The service is free and you can even watch it without registering, though a free registration unlocks other features.

Who votes for FIFA The Best awards?

The bulk of the awards above are voted on by national team coaches, captains, media, and fans.

The national team coaches and captains from all 211 FIFA member nations cast their votes for six of the awards. That balloting happened between Jan. 12 and Feb. 3, 2023 with a shortlist of names provided for each award and compiled by an expert panel selected by FIFA (official voting rules). The shortlist for each award is different.

Here’s how the winner for each award is determined:

Men’s Awards: The FIFA Player of the Year, Goalkeeper of the Year, and Coach of the Year are voted on by: (1) men’s national team coaches, (2) men’s national team captains, (3) football journalists, and (4) a fan vote on FIFA’s site. Each voting group comprised 25 percent of the final results.

Women’s Awards: The women’s awards work just like the men’s, except with women’s national team coaches and captains around the world casting ballots.

Puskas Award: Only two groups vote for the best goal — fans and an expert panel — with each representing 50 percent of the vote.

Fan Award: This is a 100 percent fan vote, as can be expected based on the name of the award.

Fair Play Award: Nominations for this award were “compiled by FIFA in collaboration with football stakeholders.” FIFA football experts pared down the nominees to a shortlist, and a separate jury of experts from FIFA and outside the organisation cast their vote.

FIFPro World 11: According to FIFPro, the global organisation that represents professional players worldwide, there are nearly 25,000 pros who cast their votes for the World 11 team for both the men and women. FIFPro, and not FIFA, oversees this voting process.


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