Messi, who has already won the FIFA Best award, lead Argentina to victory in Qatar, a career-defining victory that has increased his prospects of earning an eighth Ballon d’Or but may also make him a favourite for this award.
In addition to Mbappe, who scored a hat-trick in the World Cup final, Neymar and Achraf Hakimi of Paris Saint-Germain have been nominated.
Here are the nominees for #TheBest FIFA Player! 🏆
Cast your vote for your men’s and women’s player on FIFA+! 🗳️https://t.co/oBHBYLotsZ pic.twitter.com/nfJBfCKlJY
— FIFA World Cup (@FIFAWorldCup) January 12, 2023
Karim Benzema, who won the Ballon d’Or with Real Madrid last year, is also nominated, as is Robert Lewandowski, who has won the FIFA award the previous two years.
Manchester City’s Julian Alvarez, Kevin De Bruyne, and Erling Haaland round out the list, as do Real Madrid’s Luka Modric and Vinicius Junior, as well as Mohamed Salah, Sadio Mane, and Jude Bellingham.
Despite missing the past six months owing to injuries, Alexia Putellas has been nominated for the women’s prize.
Last year, the Barcelona and Spain midfielder earned the prize, which he retained in October.
Arsenal striker Beth Mead, who finished second to Putellas for the Ballon d’Or, is also nominated, as are two other players of England’s European Championship-winning side, Leah Williamson and Keira Walsh.
There are other awards for the best male and female coach, the top goalkeeper, and the Puskas Award for the greatest 2022 goal.
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A public poll will be held until February 3 to choose the three finalists in each category.
A jury including of national team coaches and captains, as well as journalists and fans, selects the winner.