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Messi and Argentina Receive Laureus Award

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Messi and Argentina Receive Laureus Award

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Lionel Messi, the Argentine football legend, has been crowned the Laureus Sportsman of the Year for 2023 at the ceremony held in Paris on Monday. Messi, who currently plays for Paris Saint-Germain, was also recognized on behalf of his national team, who won the 2022 World Cup in Qatar.

The 35-year-old forward was previously awarded the Laureus Sportsman of the Year in 2020, sharing it with Formula One champion Lewis Hamilton. This year, Messi made history by being the first athlete to receive both the World Sportsman of the Year Award and the World Team of the Year Award in the same year.

Upon receiving the award, Messi said, “It really sunk in what unbelievable company I’m in and what a unique honor this is.” He went on to mention the incredible sports personalities that had won the award before him, such as Michael Schumacher, Tiger Woods, Rafael Nadal, Roger Federer, Usain Bolt, Lewis Hamilton, and Novak Djokovic. Messi expressed his gratitude to his family, teammates, and supporters who had helped him throughout his career.

History maker! Lionel Messi is the first ever athlete to win the Laureus World Sportsman of the Year and Laureus World Team of the Year Awards in the same year.#Laureus23 pic.twitter.com/WJeaBghAMA

— Laureus (@LaureusSport) May 8, 2023


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Other Awardees

The Laureus World Sports Awards are widely recognized as the most prestigious accolades in sports, and the nominees are selected by global media. The winners are then chosen by the 71 members of the Laureus World Sports Academy. The awards have been presented annually since their inception in 2000.

In addition to Messi’s success, Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce was named the sportswoman of the year for her impressive performance at the World Athletics Championships, where she won the 100m gold medal. Meanwhile, Christian Eriksen won a special comeback award after his return to football following a cardiac arrest during the European Championship in 2021.

Awards for Other Sports

Additionally, Fraser-Pryce, the Jamaican sprinter, was awarded the Sportswoman of the Year for her exceptional performance in the 2022 World Athletics Championships, where she won the 100m gold medal.

Alcaraz, the Spanish tennis player, won the Breakthrough of the Year award after his victory at the 2022 US Open and his rise to the number one position in the ATP rankings. Eriksen, the Danish footballer, won the Comeback of the Year award after his remarkable recovery from a cardiac arrest he suffered at the European Championship in 2021.

The other awards presented at the ceremony were the Sportsperson of the Year with a Disability, which was won by Catherine Debrunner, and the Action Sportsperson of the Year, which was won by Eileen Gu. The TeamUp program, which aims to promote social inclusion through sports, was awarded the Laureus Sport for Good Award.

Messi’s Status

Messi’s win comes at a time when his future at PSG is uncertain. His contract expires this summer, and while his two-year deal included the option of a third year, it is expected that he will leave the club.

Messi was recently suspended by PSG for an unauthorised trip to Saudi Arabia, but former Chelsea and Real Madrid midfielder, Claude Makelele, expressed his disagreement with the club’s decision to suspend Messi and hoped that he would stay with the club.

Regardless of what the future holds for Messi, his outstanding performances on the pitch and the recognition he has received at the Laureus World Sports Awards have cemented his legacy as one of the greatest footballers of all time.


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