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Osimhen shortlisted for FIFA The Best, the second of projected three nominations



Trail-blazing Victor Osimhen has become the first Nigeria male footballer to be shortlisted for he Best FIFA Men’s Player Award. It is the second time within few days that he has been put on the shortlist of major football award.

Recently, he was in the shortlist for the Balon d’Or and he will be an obvious nominee for the African Footballer of the Year.

Also on the shortlist are the usual suspects – Lionel Messi, Kylian Mbappe and Erling Haaland.  Spain’s Aitana Bonmati is among the nominees for the Best Women’s Player on the back of winning the Golden Ball at the World Cup.

Half of the dozen nominees in the men’s category were part of Manchester City’s 2022-23 treble-winning squad, while City’s Spanish manager Pep Guardiola is nominated for Best Men’s Coach.



Spain’s World Cup win sees four of their players among the 16 nominees for the women’s award. World Cup runners-up England have four players on the list, with Sarina Wiegman up for the women’s coaching award, while Australia have three players.

World Cup winners Messi of Argentina and Spain’s Alexia Putellas are the current holders of the top player awards.

The nominees were shortlisted by a panel of soccer experts that included retired players Mia Hamm and Didier Drogba

Voting for the eighth annual awards opened on Thursday on and closes in mid-October. National team coaches, captains, journalists and fans make up the list of voters.

 FIFA Men’s Player Nominees


  • Julián Álvarez(Argentina / Manchester City FC)
  • Marcelo Brozović(Croatia / FC Internazionale Milano /Al Nassr FC);
  • Kevin De Bruyne(Belgium / Manchester City FC);
  • İlkay Gündoğan(Germany / Manchester City FC /FC Barcelona);
  • Erling Haaland(Norway / Manchester City FC);
  • Rodrigo(Rodri)
  • Hernández Cascante(Spain / Manchester City FC);
  • Khvicha Kvaratskhelia(Georgia / SSC Napoli);
  • Kylian Mbappé(France / Paris Saint-Germain);
  • Lionel Messi(Argentina / Paris Saint-Germain /Club Internacional de Fútbol Miami);
  • Victor Osimhen(Nigeria / SSC Napoli);
  • Declan Rice(England / West Ham United FC /Arsenal FC);
  • Bernardo Silva(Portugal / Manchester City FC)

The Best FIFA Women’s Player Nominees

  • AitanaBonmatí (Spain / FC Barcelona)
  • Linda Caicedo(Colombia / Real Madrid CF)
  • Rachel Daly(England / Aston Villa Ladies FC)
  • Kadidiatou Diani(France / Olympique Lyonnais / Paris Saint-Germain prior to Aug 2023);
  • Caitlin Foord(Australia / Arsenal WFC);
  • Mary Fowler (Australia / Manchester City WFC);
  • Alex Greenwood(England / Manchester City WFC);
  • Jennifer Hermoso(Spain / CF Pachuca Femenil);
  • Lindsey Horan(USA / Olympique Lyonnais);
  • Amanda Ilestedt(Sweden / Arsenal WFC / Paris Saint-Germain (FRA) prior to June 2023);
  • Lauren James(England / Chelsea FC);
  • Sam Kerr(Australia / Chelsea FC);
  • Mapi León(Spain / FC Barcelona);
  • Hinata Miyazawa(Japan / Mynavi Sendai);
  • Salma Paralluelo(Spain / FC Barcelona);
  • Keira Walsh(England / FC Barcelona).

The Best FIFA Women’s Coach Nominees

  • Peter Gerhardsson(Sweden):
  • Jonatan Giráldez(Spain / FC Barcelona);
  • Tony Gustavsson (Sweden / Australia)
  • Emma Hayes(England / Chelsea FC);
  • Sarina Wiegman (Netherlands / England).

The Best FIFA Men’s Coach Nominees

  • Pep Guardiola(Spain / Manchester City FC);
  • Simone Inzaghi(Italy/ FC Internazionale Milano);
  • Ange Postecoglou (Australia / Celtic FC /Tottenham Hotspur);
  • Luciano Spalletti (Italy /SSC Napoli);
  • Xavi (Spain / FC Barcelona).

The Best FIFA Women’s Goalkeeper  Nominees

  • Mackenzie Arnold (Australia / West Ham United FC);
  • Ann-Katrin Berger(Germany / Chelsea FC);
  • Catalina Coll (Spain / FC Barcelona);
  • Mary Earps(England / Manchester United);
  • Christiane Endler (Chile / Olympique Lyonnais);
  • Zećira Mušović (Sweden / Chelsea FC);
  • Sandra Paños García-Villamil (Spain / FC Barcelona).

The Best FIFA Men’s Goalkeeper  Nominees

  • Yassine Bounou (Morocco / Sevilla FC);
  • Thibaut Courtois(Belgium / Real Madrid CF);
  • Ederson(Brazil / Manchester City FC);
  • André Onana(Cameroon / FC Internazionale Milano /Manchester United FC);
  • Marc-André ter Stegen(Germany / FC Barcelona).

The FIFA Fan Award Nominees

  • Club Atlético Colón de Santa Fe fan(Argentina);
  • Fran Hurndall(England);
  • Miguel Ángel,Millonarios fan (Colombia).


Kunle Solaja is the author of landmark books on sports and journalism as well as being a multiple award-winning journalist and editor of long standing. He is easily Nigeria’s foremost soccer diarist and Africa's most capped FIFA World Cup journalist, having attended all FIFA World Cup finals from Italia ’90 to Qatar 2022. He was honoured at the Qatar 2022 World Cup by FIFA and AIPS.