Argentina World Cup champion and PSG forward Lionel Messi won The Best 2022 Men's Player of the Year award on Monday, Feb. 27. The gala, held in the French capital of Paris, awarded Messi the coveted trophy confirming his status of best player in world football this season and solidifying his GOAT claim.
FIFA announced the three finalists for the award earlier this month, with PSG forwards Kylian Mbappe and Lionel Messi among them and along with Real Madrid striker Karim Benzema.
Messi and Mbappe faced each other in the best World Cup final in history a little over two months ago. Ultimately, Messi came up victorious in Qatar last December and the Argentine veteran also conquered this award over teammate Mbappe.
Karim Benzema wasn't deemed worthy enough of getting the award after he quit on the France national team playing in Qatar. The striker got called up by coach Didier Deschamps, but Benzema got injured already in Qatar, later refusing to return to the camp and later announcing his retirement from international competitions. He is not expected to represent Les Bleus in the future anymore.
Mbappe already lifted the World Cup trophy back in 2018 when he won it for his nation as a teenager, reaching his second final in as many attempts last December.
Messi denied Mbappe of his second World Cup by winning his first one and completing his case to be named the absolute GOAT of the sport without any possible argument remaining to be made against him. Messi led Argentina to their third World Cup triumph and the first one since former GOAT Diego Maradona did it in the last century.