World XI team of the year revealed at Fifa Best awards featuring Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi

The Independent
The Independent

Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi were both included in the men’s world XI team of the year alongside Erling Haaland and Robert Lewandowski – winner of the men’s individual prize – in a front four.

Fifpro’s 2021 team crowbarred in the attacking quartet, with a back three of Manchester City’s Ruben Dias alongside Bayern Munich’s David Alaba and Euro 2020 winner Leonardo Bonucci. Dias’s City teammate Kevin De Bruyne was named in midfield alongside Jorginho and N’Golo Kante.

Meanwhile Barcelona players were surprisingly omitted from the women’s team, despite Barca and Spain midfielder Alexia Putellas winning the women’s player of the year award. The team did however include England and Manchester City defender Lucy Bronze. “I don’t think I can put words to be in this team, to be a role model for girls and boys across the world,” she said.

The world XIs were voted for by players around the world. The goalkeeper, three defenders, three midfielders and three forwards with the most votes were automatically entered into the team, with the final spot in the XI going to the next player with the most votes from any position – hence why the men’s team ended up with four strikers.

Chelsea claimed both coaching prizes as Thomas Tuchel and Emma Hayes won the men’s and women’s awards respectively, while Edouard Mendy was named men’s goalkeeper of the year.

Tuchel was named men’s coach of the year after steering his club to Champions League glory last season. The 48-year-old German replaced Frank Lampard at Stamford Bridge in January 2021 and had an immediate impact, starting his spell with a 14-game unbeaten run.

Former Borussia Dortmund and Paris St Germain head coach Tuchel also led Chelsea to the FA Cup final and a fourth-placed finish in the Premier League. He was named on a seven-man shortlist alongside Antonio Conte, Hansi Flick, Pep Guardiola, Roberto Mancini, Lionel Scaloni and Diego Simeone.

Hayes, 45, guided the Blues to Women’s Super League and League Cup glory last season and steered the London side to the Champions League final. She was named WSL manager of the season for her feats and was awarded an OBE in the New Year Honours for services to football.

Mendy, 29, is in his second season at the Premier League club after joining from Rennes in September 2020. The Senegal international had been nominated for the award alongside Italy and AC Milan’s Gianluigi Donnarumma and Germany and Bayern Munich’s Manuel Neuer.

Chile’s Christiane Endler, who joined Lyon from Paris St Germain in June 2021, was named women’s goalkeeper of the year.

Men’s Fifpro world XI

Goalkeeper: Gianluigi Donnarumma.

Defenders: David Alaba, Leonardo Bonucci, Ruben Dias.

Midfielders: Kevin De Bruyne, Jorginho, N'Golo Kante.

Forwards: Cristiano Ronaldo, Erling Haaland, Robert Lewandowski, Lionel Messi.

Women’s Fifpro world XI

Goalkeeper: Christiane Endler.

Defenders: Lucy Bronze, Millie Bright, Magdalena Eriksson, Wendie Renard.

Midfielders: Estefania Banini, Barbara Bonansea, Carli Lloyd.

Forwards: Marta, Vivianne Miedema, Alex Morgan.

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