The 2018 FIFA’s Best Awards is scheduled to be held on 24th September at London. FIFA recently released the final shortlist for the FIFA’s Best awards and received a fair bit of criticism. For starters, it is strange that there are no World Cup winners in the year of the tournament for the first time since 1991. In the best coaches shortlist, the absence of Pep Guardiola, whose Manchester City earned a record 100 points in the league to lift the Premier League trophy, is also worth noting. The presence of Kasper Schmeichel in the goalkeepers' shortlist is also baffling.
But perhaps the most surprising of all was the final 3 shortlist of the FIFA’s Best Player. Out of the final 10 shortlist, which contained the names Varane, Kane, De Bruyne, Ronaldo, Griezmann, Salah, Modric, Messi, Mbappe and Hazard, the final three stood – Salah, Modric, Ronaldo. The decision was hardly popular and has surprised football fans all over the world who feel that the final list is not well deserved.
The votes for the FIFA Best awards are divided into 4 sources. These are votes from fans, votes from National Coaches of FIFA Member association, the captains of FIFA Football National Teams and a selected group of football journalists from all the above countries. Each group accounts for 25% of the vote, as such, the final 3 shortlisted players were selected by a wide range of people from around the world. But it is still clear that a few deserving candidates were left out and we now look at the 3 players who deserved to be in the final 3 of the FIFA’s Best Awards.
#3 Kylian Mbappe
Kylian Mbappe had a fabulous 2017/18 season. He joined Paris Saint-Germain on loan at the start of the season and went on to score 21 goals in 44 appearances in total for PSG in all competitions. He ended the season, with the Ligue 1 Trophy, the Coupe de France and Coupe de la Ligue. He was adjudged the Ligue 1 young player of the year for the second season running, Yet Mbappe did not just stop there. Over the summer he won the FIFA World Cup 2018 with France and was awarded the FIFA World Cup Best Young Player Award.
Mbappe ended the season, with four trophies and two individual awards, yet he could not make it to the final three for the FIFA’s Best Award. When considering the year he has had, it is even harder to believe this. In the calendar year 2017, Mbappe scored 32 goals. That is the highest return in a year by an under 21 footballer since, 1995, when Ronaldo scored 38 goals for PSV. The fact that Mbappe is perhaps the finest young talents around makes his absence in the final three a glaring miss.