Tongues have been wagging since Lionel Messi nominated for the 2023 UEFA Player of the Year award, here is explanation of why he made the list.
Though Messi starred for Paris and ended the season with his second Ligue 1 title but without success in Europe, it was his exploits at the FIFA World Cup with Argentina that really caught the eye.
An icon of his generation, Messi became the first Argentinian to lift the World Cup since Diego Maradona, scoring seven goals in the process as he was awarded the Golden Ball for best overall player at the finals.
To add to that, he became only the third player in history to reach 100 international goals in March 2023, a significant contribution to beat Real Madrid star Vinicuis Junior and others to join Manchester City duo of Kevin De Bruyne and Erling Haaland on the three player shortlist.
LIONEL MESSI 2022/23 SEASON IN NUMBERS
Achievements: 2022 World Cup winner, World Cup Golden Ball winner, Ligue 1 winner
UEFA Champions League
Player of the Match awards: 1
FRENCH LIGUE ONE