It's awards season - and the awards for the world’s biggest sport saw some familiar faces grace the Zürich Kongresshaus Red Carpet last night.
Argentina’s Lionel Messi has been amazing football fans all over the world for many years now. Last night in Zurich, he was presented with the Ballon d’Or for the fifth time in his extraordinary career, winning ahead of Portugal’s Cristiano Ronaldo and Brazil’s Neymar. Messi won the award for four consecutive years from 2009 to 2012 and is now back on top of the football world. The Argentinian had another extraordinary year in 2015 where he scored 53 goals in 56 appearances in all competitions for his team, FC Barcelona. He also inspired Argentina to the Copa America final, where they were beaten by Chile on penalties.
Arguably the greatest player of this generation, Messi was recognised by international captains, managers and journalists for his outstanding performances during 2015. The Argentinian star’s efforts throughout the year also helped his club FC Barcelona become the first team to complete the treble of league, cup and Champions League successes for the second time.
"It is a very special moment for me to be back here on this stage, winning again another Ballon d'Or after being there in the audience watching Cristiano win," Messi said after receiving the award.
On the women's side, United States and Houston Dash midfielder Carli Lloyd won the FIFA’s Women’s Player of the Year. In 2015, she captained the USA to Women's World Cup glory, scoring a 13-minute hat-trick in the final - including one from the halfway line - to finish as the tournament's joint top goal scorer. Lloyd beat former Germany striker Celia Sasic and Japan midfielder Aya Miyama who helped her team to the World Cup final, where they lost to the U.S.
"It has been a dream ever since I started with the national team. Keep your dreams and just go after them," Lloyd said on stage.
We now turn our attention to the Laureus World Sports Awards, the premier global sports awards honouring the greatest sportsmen and women across all sports each year.
Will Lionel Messi be nominated for Laureus World Sportsman of the Year? Will Carli Lloyd receive a nomination in the Sportswoman of the Year category?