FIFA awards ceremony to be virtual event on December 17

The Best FIFA Football Awards was intended as a gala event in September in Milan until the coronavirus pandemic forced its cancellation.

Lionel Messi and Megan Rapinoe at the Best FIFA Football awards in Milan, in September, 2019. - GETTY IMAGES

FIFA’s annual awards ceremony will be held as a virtual event on December 17, football’s governing body said on Friday, announcing the most-prized individual honors in a pandemic-hit year when France Football magazine cancelled its Ballon d’Or contests.

The Best FIFA Football Awards was intended as a gala event in September in Milan until the coronavirus pandemic forced its cancellation.

Last year in Milan, Lionel Messi won a record sixth FIFA men’s best player award and Megan Rapinoe won her first best women’s player award.

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Voting by national team captains and coaches, plus media and fans, will open next Wednesday and run through December 9, FIFA said.

Awards are also made for the best coaches and goalkeepers in men’s and women’s football, and the scorer of the best goal — the Puskas Award.

Players vote for a men and women’s team lineup organised by the FIFPRO global union.

FIFA makes awards for fair play and a special fan prize.

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