Sports

Real Madrid's Ronaldo wins first Fifa best player award

- BBC

Jan 10, 2017-

Cristiano Ronaldo was named the world's best player at the inaugural Best Fifa Football Awards in Zurich.

Real Madrid and Portugal forward Ronaldo, 31, beat Barcelona's Lionel Messi and Atletico Madrid's Antoine Griezmann to the prize.

Ronaldo also won the Ballon d'Or in December, with both honours recognition for success in the Champions League with Real and Euro 2016 with Portugal.

Carli Lloyd of the United States was named the world's best female player.

Leicester's Claudio Ranieri was named best men's coach, ex-Germany boss Silvia Neid won the female coach award, while Penang's Mohd Faiz Subri received the Puskas award for the best goal of 2016.

Hold on... haven't we already had the Ballon d'Or?

We have - but this is different.

For the past six years, the world's best player has received the Fifa Ballon d'Or award.

A version of that prize has been awarded by France Football magazine since 1956, but last year world football's governing body ended its association with that honour.

Instead, it introduced the Best Fifa Football Awards, with Ronaldo the first recipient of its main prize.

Voting for the player and coach categories was by national team captains and managers, selected journalists and, for the first time, an online poll of fans.

Each counted for 25% of the points.

Best Fifa men's player - Cristiano Ronaldo

2016 was quite a year for Ronaldo.

As well as scoring the decisive penalty in the shootout to win the Champions League, rescuing Real with a hat-trick in the final of the Club World Cup, captaining Portugal to Euro 2016 glory and being recognised with a fourth Ballon d'Or, he now has something Messi does not - the honour of being named best Fifa men's player.

The former Manchester United forward had been the favourite for the award, following a year in which he continued to deliver remarkable statistics. These included:

"It was my best year so far," said Ronaldo. "The trophy for Portugal was amazing. I was so happy and of course I cannot forget the Champions League and the Club World Cup. We ended the year in the best way. I'm so glad to win a lot of trophies, collective and individual. I'm so, so proud."

Ronaldo and Messi have a history of not voting for each other for major awards and they continued that habit, both filling their top three with club-mates.

Portugal captain Ronaldo opted for Gareth Bale, Luka Modric and Sergio Ramos.

Messi, the Argentina captain, went for Luis Suarez, Neymar and Andres Iniesta.

 

Published: 10-01-2017 10:21

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