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Did Messi Deserve FIFA The Best Award?

The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Casper Libero chapter.

Lionel Messi, Paris Saint Germain (PSG) and Argentina star, won the award for the best player in the world season 21/22, by FIFA The Best. He has won this prize six times already, but this one caused a lot of anger at people who thought Kylian Mbappé, his teammate in France, should have won. Mbappé is only 24 years old and winning this prize would be absolutely well-deserved, but people believing Leo did not deserve only because Mbappé did more, is problematic. Let’s see some reasons that justify Messi’s win.

The Best Award has always prioritized to reward the greatest player in the World Cup: 1994 with Romário; 2002 with Ronaldo; 2006 with Cannavaro and others. In 2022, the best player and winner from the competition was Messi, even though Mbappé was the striker and scored a hat-trick in the final. Both of them had an amazing performance during the World Cup, but only one had won it.

The big age difference puts the Argentinian, who is 35 years old, in a place even higher than he already is, competing with an 11 years younger player and winning it, it’s not for everyone. Since his physical conditions are not the same as when he was Kylian‘s age.

Besides that, both had a great season at PSG, but the big difference is the amount of games they have played. Mbappé has the greatest numbers because he played much more games than Messi, due to injuries. Even with this problem, Messi helped PSG with 51 participations in goals in 53 games, not including his awesome performances, which are not in any statistics. 

The tiebreaker to see who really should have won The Best needed to be the most important competition in football, the World Cup. Leo scored in every knockout, including two goals in the final, one during the extra time. Seven games and seven goals, all of them were important. Including three amazing assists, carrying Argentina in his own back to this title, with 35 years old, on his last dance with this shirt in this competition. The Best Award carries also an emotional meaning, to the best player in activity who had his last chance to finish his career in the best way possible. And Lionel Messi did it. 


The article above was edited by Ana Beatriz Aith.

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Julia Macori

Casper Libero '25

Nascida em Sorocaba/Sp, feminista, apaixonada por escrever, ler e completamente fissurada por futebol. Descobri na escrita a melhor forma que encontrei pra me expressar, de uma maneira que possa compartilhar experiências à quem quer que seja. Eu e o jornalismo andamos lado a lado com o objetivo de levar, além de informação, todo tipo de leitura que estiver ao meu alcance, melhorando a cada dia.