Lionel Messi, the renowned football maestro, has emerged victorious as the Laureus World Sportsman of the Year at the prestigious Laureus World Sports Awards. This remarkable achievement comes from Messi’s ultimate triumph in Qatar, where he fulfilled his long-standing World Cup aspirations.
Adding to his glory, he also accepted the Team of the Year award on behalf of Argentina, who secured a thrilling victory over France in last year’s unforgettable final, determined through a nerve-wracking penalty shootout.
In an illustrious ceremony held in Paris, Messi, aged 35, graciously received these accolades just hours after confirming his return to Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) following a brief suspension from the club.
Lionel Messi is the first athlete to win both Laureus awards in the same year, a remarkable feat indeed.
In his heartfelt acceptance speech, he expressed gratitude to his club and international teammates, recognizing that his achievements were not solitary endeavours but the collective result of dedicated teamwork.
Lionel Messi conveyed his appreciation, stating, “This is an extraordinary honour, particularly as the Laureus World Sports Awards are being held in Paris this year, the city that has warmly embraced my family since we arrived in 2021. I want to thank all my teammates in the national Team and at PSG. None of this would have been possible without their unwavering support, and I am immensely grateful to share this success with them.”
Despite the triumph, Messi’s future with PSG remains uncertain. While his contract is set to expire this summer, his initial two-year deal did include the option for a third year. However, there is widespread anticipation that he may depart the club. Recently, Messi apologized for an unauthorized trip to Saudi Arabia, adding intrigue to his PSG journey.
During the awards ceremony, former Chelsea and Real Madrid midfielder Claude Makelele voiced his disagreement with PSG’s decision to suspend Messi and expressed his hope that the seven-time Ballon d’Or winner would remain with the Team. Read more Sports News here.
Makelele stated, “It’s an internal matter within the club, so I cannot fully comprehend the situation. However, there are alternative ways to handle disciplinary matters internally. It’s his personal choice. Messi has contributed so much and deserves the opportunity to enjoy himself. I genuinely hope that Paris will retain his services. Losing players of his caliber, who bring immense joy to the game, would be a great loss for us.”
Christian Eriksen, the talented Danish footballer representing Manchester United, received a special comeback award in another remarkable triumph. This recognition acknowledges his courageous return to the game after experiencing a harrowing cardiac arrest.
Reflecting on his journey, Eriksen stated, “For me, it’s been far more significant to come back and reclaim my identity as a person than merely returning to the world of football. My primary objective was to resume my role as a devoted father and a loving partner, which holds utmost importance for me.”
Eriksen made his comeback in January 2022, signing with Brentford before eventually securing a move to Manchester United in the summer. The midfielder shared the most memorable moment from the past year: “There have been numerous uplifting moments.
I had the opportunity to restart my football career with Brentford, marking the beginning of my footballing journey once again. However, beyond that, what truly stands out to me is the last few months and the entire period since my return. Being myself, regaining my status as a world-class player, and receiving a second chance in life—it is a tremendous gift.”