The best FIFA Football Awards
2021 at a glance

The Best FIFA Football Awards™­

4 min. reading time

Following a year where records were broken, dreams were made and aspirations achieved on football pitches around the world, FIFA honoured the game’s greatest talents during The Best awards – in which two of the greatest ever were presented with their own special awards.

Held at FIFA’s headquarters in Zurich, with most winners and nominees attending virtually due to the ongoing pandemic, it was the sixth edition of FIFA’s showpiece awards ceremony. The awards represent the game’s highest honour for coaches and players, but are also a celebration where football fans are recognised – and play a vital and active part.

Alexia Putellas and Robert Lewandowski crowned The Best­

Poland and Bayern Munich striker Lewandowski was recognised as The Best FIFA Men’s Player for the second year in succession. For her part, midfielder Putellas, who had made The Best FIFA Women’s Player shortlist for the first time, capped her exploits with Barcelona and the Spanish national team by winning the prestigious award.

Coaching clean sweep for Chelsea­

Chelsea Women manager Emma Hayes was voted The Best FIFA Women’s Coach for the first time in her career, a feat that was matched by her Chelsea counterpart, Thomas Tuchel, who topped the poll for The Best FIFA Men’s Coach.

Rest of The Best­

FIFA FIFPRO Men’s World11­

Goalkeeper: Gianluigi Donnarumma (AC Milan/Paris Saint-Germain)

Defenders: David Alaba (Bayern Munich/Real Madrid), Leonardo Bonucci (Juventus), Rúben Dias (Manchester City)

Midfielders: Kevin De Bruyne (Manchester City), Jorginho (Chelsea), N’Golo Kanté (Chelsea)

Forwards: Cristiano Ronaldo (Juventus/Manchester United), Erling Haaland (Borussia Dortmund), Robert Lewandowski (Bayern Munich), Lionel Messi (Barcelona/Paris Saint-Germain)

FIFA FIFPRO Women’s World11­

Goalkeeper: Christiane Endler (Paris Saint-Germain/Olympique Lyonnais)

Defenders: Millie Bright (Chelsea Women), Lucy Bronze (Manchester City Women), Magdalena Eriksson (Chelsea Women), Wendie Renard (Olympique Lyonnais)

Midfielders: Estefania Banini (Levante Femenino/Atletico de Madrid Femenino), Barbara Bonansea (Juventus Women), Carli Lloyd (NJ/NY Gotham)

Forwards: Marta (Orlando Pride), Vivianne Miedema (Arsenal Women), Alex Morgan (Tottenham Hotspur Women/Orlando Pride/San Diego Wave)

What truly matters most is the moments I’ve shared and the connections I’ve made. From celebrating with an entire country to experiencing the heartbreak of defeat with those closest to me. To all my team-mates and staff members along the way, I hope you know how thankful I am for all of you.
Christine Sinclair

FIFA Puskás Award­

Erik Lamela (ARG)
Arsenal v. Tottenham Hotspur [Premier League]
(14 March 2021)

FIFA Fair Play Award­

Denmark national team/Danish medical team and coaching staff
The Danish men’s national team medical team, coaching staff and players responded heroically after Christian Eriksen collapsed.

FIFA Fan Award­

Denmark and Finland fans
For solidarity shown by the crowd as they waited for news on Christian Eriksen’s health following his collapse during a group-stage match at Copenhagen’s Parken Stadium.

The Best FIFA Special Award­

Two very special awards were also given out on the night to the two greatest international goalscorers the world has ever seen – Christine Sinclair and Cristiano Ronaldo.

Canada’s Sinclair was bestowed with The Best FIFA Special Award – with 188 goals and counting to her name – for being the international game’s top scorer of any gender. It capped a memorable 12 months for the 38-year-old from British Columbia, after she also captained Canada to their first major global crown – a gold medal at the Women’s Olympic Football Tournament in Tokyo.

Meanwhile, Cristiano Ronaldo added to his seemingly endless tally of records, gongs and achievements when – with a match-winning brace against the Republic of Ireland in September 2021 – he surpassed Ali Daei’s 109-goal tally to become the leading all-time scorer in men’s international football.

His achievements were even more remarkable given that he scored just 12 goals in his first 40 Portugal appearances. However since then, he has never looked back and runs such as his most recent – 49 goals in 47 games – saw him move ahead and beyond the legendary Daei. He too received The Best FIFA Special Award.

It’s a special award for me to be the best goalscorer ever. It’s a great achievement. I’m so proud. I never thought that one day I would be the number one. It’s a great honour for me. It’s great to be the [record] goalscorer of all time.
Cristiano Ronaldo