Messi Triumphs Again: FIFA Best Award Decision Explained as Voting Tied

Lionel Messi Secures Third FIFA Best Men’s Player Award, Edging Out Erling Haaland in a Deadlocked Vote

In a surprising turn of events, Lionel Messi clinched his third FIFA Best Men’s Player award, prevailing over Erling Haaland, despite the two football stars tying in points. The ceremony, held at The Best FIFA Football Awards in London on Monday, marked Messi’s victory, beating out fellow finalists Haaland and Kylian Mbappe.

Messi and Haaland both garnered 48 points each, creating a deadlock in the voting process. However, Messi emerged as the winner, thanks to the unique rule that assigns more weight to national team captains’ votes, where each vote carries five points.

The 36-year-old forward for Inter Miami and Argentina opted not to attend the London ceremony, and his former Barcelona teammate, Thierry Henry, accepted the award on Messi’s behalf. Alongside winning the Best FIFA Men’s Player award, Messi secured a spot in the FIFA FIFPRO Men’s World XI, a recognition shared with his fellow nominees Haaland and Mbappe, as well as several Manchester City players.

This latest victory adds to Messi’s remarkable tally, having previously won the FIFA Best Men’s Player award in 2019, 2022, and now in 2023. The achievement propels Messi ahead of his rival Cristiano Ronaldo, who has won the accolade twice since its inception in 2016.

The voting process for The Best FIFA Men’s Player award involves national team captains, national team coaches, journalists, and fans participating in public voting. Each group contributes equally, holding a 25% weight in the overall voting process. Voters rank three players, allocating five points to the first choice, three to the second, and one to the third. In the event of a tie, the player with more first-choice votes prevails. If the tie persists, preference is given to the player receiving more votes from all team captains, and if needed, from team coaches before resorting to additional tie-break methods defined by FIFA.

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Despite Messi’s dominance, Haaland’s stellar season with achievements in the Premier League, UEFA Champions League, and FA Cup raised debates over the award. Many believed the Norwegian striker deserved the honor, especially considering his impressive goal tally of 52. However, the tie-breaking rules worked in Messi’s favor, solidifying his status as one of football’s greatest icons.

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