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TCIFA President Tasked With Presenting Messi With Male Player of the Year Award

TCIFA President Sonia Fulford (in green), was chosen to present Lionel Messi with the Best Male Player Award. The trophy can be seen on a stand immediately before the TCIFA President

President of the Turks and Caicos Islands Football Association (TCIFA), Sonia Fulford, was given the great honor of presenting the Best Male Player of the Year for 2023, to Lionel Messi at the FIFA


 The Argentine was winning that trophy for the eighth time. He also won it in 2022.


Fulford, who posted on the news on her Facebook page, deemed the opportunity an honor. The event was held on Monday, January 15, 2024. Messi was not present to collect the trophy.


“What an incredible honor it was to present the prestigious award of The Best FIFA Men's Player of the Year 2023-to-eight-time winner, Lionel Messi. Congratulations to all the nominees and winners,” Fulford said in her post.


Messi won the title, beating Manchester City’s treble-winning Norwegian striker Erling Haaland and France’s Paris St Germain forward Kylian Mbappe to the award.

Spain’s 2023 World Cup winner Aitana Bonmati was voted the best women’s player of the year.

Messi secured the men’s award in 2022 after guiding Argentina to World Cup victory, after which he clinched the Ligue 1 title with PSG alongside Mbappe following that success, before moving to Major League Soccer team Inter Miami.

The 36-year-old, voted the best player by national teams coaches, captains, journalists and fans, helped Inter Miami win the 2023 Leagues Cup — a competition between MLS and Mexico’s Liga MX sides — scoring 10 goals.

The award period for the men’s prize ran from Dec. 19, 2022 to Aug. 20, 2023, and started the day after the World Cup final in Qatar.

Haaland, who helped City clinch a treble of Premier League, FA Cup and Champions League titles by scoring 52 goals in 53 matches across all competitions in the 2022-23 season, finished second in the voting.

The 23-year-old had the same points as Messi but lost out by having fewer first-place votes from national team captains.

City’s Pep Guardiola won the Best Men’s Coach award. The Spaniard, who before winning the treble with City last term had achieved the same feat at Barcelona in 2008-09, dedicated his award to fellow nominees Simone Inzaghi and Luciano Spalletti.

Inzaghi guided Inter Milan to the 2023 Champions League final, where they lost 1-0 to City, while Spalletti won Serie A with Napoli to end the club’s 33-year wait for the title.

Sarina Wiegman claimed the Best Women’s coach prize after leading England to the World Cup final where they lost 1-0 to Spain.

Seven of her Lionesses were included in the Women’s World XI, including Mary Earps, who also took the Best Women’s Goalkeeper Award.

Brazil’s Manchester City keeper Ederson won the men’s award.


The Cyprus Mail also contributed to this story.



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