Poland striker Robert Lewandowski was named the FIFA Best Men’s Player at a virtual ceremony, beating players such as Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi who were shortlisted for the honour.
The Bayern Munich star was in extraordinary form last season, scoring a whopping 55 goals in a mere 47 games, helping the German club to a fantastic treble. He also ended up as the top scorer in the league, cup and Champions League.
This was the first time in his career that Lewandowski has received the honour. He was also widely expected to win the Ballon d’Or before the award was cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic.
It’s time to find out the winners!
The Best Fifa Football Awards 2020! 🏆
— BBC Sport (@BBCSport) December 17, 2020
“If you win such an award and share that title with Messi and Ronaldo, that is unbelievable and it means so much to me,” Lewandowski said.
“A long time ago, I remember I was longing for something like this and now I can win such and award. This really means, regardless of where you come form, all that matters is what you put into it.”
“This award also belongs to my colleagues, the coach and Bayern Munich in general. It is an incredible feeling, a lot of emotions,” he said.
Meanwhile, Manchester City defender Lucy Bronze won the best women’s player award. In the process, she became the first defender and the first English women’s player to do so. She beat Chelsea’s Pernille Harder and Lyon’s Wendie Renard to win the award.
“What a surprise. To even be nominated alongside the two other players, they are both incredible players and outstanding human beings well,” Bronze said over video call.
“I don’t think I have the words right now to explain how I am feeling. If there is anything 2020 has taught us it is to appreciate every moment you have, never look too far ahead and live in the hear and now,” she said. “I will appreciate winning this award now more than ever, and I will remember this moment for the rest of my life.”
Also, Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp was named the best men’s coach for the second successive year. The German was recognized for guiding the Liverpool team to its first Premier League title in 30 years.
“I am [shocked],” said Klopp.
“I have so many people to thank and most of all my coaches. If I had known we’d won it my coaches would be here with me. What we did in the last year is all about these boys.
“We didn’t dream 30 years but we dream already for a few years. It was absolutely exceptional and we all had a special year in an unfortunately not so positive way but for Liverpool fans at least we could make some highlights in a tricky period. I had no idea how it would feel and it felt absolutely overwhelming.”
Meanwhile, Netherlands manager Sarina Wiegman won the award for best women’s coach.
Lewandowski’s Bayern Munich teammate Manuel Neur won The FIFA Best Men’s Goalkeeper Award after a remarkable season with the German giants. He beat Atletico Madrid’s Jan Oblak and Liverpool’s Alisson to the recognition.
Lyon’s Sarah Bouhaddi was awarded the best women’s goalkeeper award.