Cristiano Ronaldo was unsurprisingly one of the nominees for the FIFA The Best Men's Player of the Year award, as he was joined on the podium by Barcelona captain Lionel Messi and Bayern Munich talisman Robert Lewandowski. The Polish striker ultimately got his hands on the prized accolade as a reward for his outstanding goalscoring season with the Bavarian giants.
Lewandowski led from the front in what was a historic campaign for him, as he spearheaded Bayern Munich to a treble. With the 2020 Ballon d'Or canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the FIFA Best Player award is as high an honor as he'll receive in 2020, as he capped off a stunning year on a personal level with the award.
While Lionel Messi won the award in 2019, Cristiano Ronaldo has won it twice in the past (2016 & 2017). Luka Modric is the only other recipient of the prize since its inception in 2016.
After the virtual ceremony in the FIFA headquarters in Zurich, details about how each player voted began to surface on social media. Cristiano Ronaldo's voted for Robert Lewandowski for the number one spot, while Lionel Messi and Kylian Mbappe completed the top three.
Cristiano Ronaldo picks Lionel Messi as the second-best player in the world for 2020
The Juventus goal machine put his personal rivalry with Lionel Messi aside and voted for the Barcelona captain, as he showed his class once again. Surprisingly, though, the Argentine omitted Cristiano Ronaldo from his top three altogether, as Neymar Jr and Kylian Mbappe joined Lewandowski as his top three picks.
Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi have both won the award before and are likely to do so at some point in the future. The legendary attackers have defined the modern era and have shown no signs of slowing down despite entering their 30s, as they look to carry on playing for many years to come.
Earlier this year, they went head to head in the UEFA Champions League group stages for the first time. Juventus romped to a 3-0 victory against Barcelona on the night, as Cristiano Ronaldo stole the show with a match-winning brace at the Camp Nou.
Published 18 Dec 2020, 04:36 IST