Is Messi the number 1 player in the world? Lionel Messi has been crowned the world’s best male footballer at FIFA’s annual award ceremony in Paris, in recognition for inspiring Argentina to World Cup glory in Qatar in December. Messi – the winner of seven Ballon d’Or’s – claimed his second The Best title and first since 2019 after pipping PSG team-mate and World Cup final opponent Kylian Mbappe. The 35-year-old was sensational as he masterminded Argentina to the World Cup crown last year, scoring seven goals and becoming the first player to score in every knockout game at the competition. An emotional Messi admitted that the personal accolade completed what had been a ‘tremendous’ year of success for him and his club and country colleagues. While holding his award, Messi stated: ‘Wow, it’s amazing. It’s been a tremendous year and it’s an honour for me to be here tonight and win this award. Without my team-mates I wouldn’t be here. I achieved the dream I had been hoping for for so long. Very few people can achieve that and I have been lucky to do so.’ It was later revealed that Messi didn’t feel inclined to support his PSG team-mate Mbappe in the voting process and instead picked Neymar in his vote as Argentina captain.