Lionel Messi has emerge as the winner of the 2023 Laureus Sportsman of the Year Award, MySportDab reports.
Messi won the award ahead of three other contenders who were also nominated for the award.
His PSG teammate, Kylian Mbappe was also on the list of the nominees for the award after the latter led France to the 2022 World Cup final in Qatar where they lost to Argentina.
Kylian Mbappe was the only other footballer nominee for the award aside from Lionel Messi.
The two other nominees for the category of the award were tennis star Raphael Nadal and Max Verstappen.
Messi is believed to have pipped Kylian Mbappe to the award, including Nadal and Verstappen after he led Argentina to 2022 World Cup triumph in Qatar.
Lionel Messi played a leading role in Argentina’s 2022 World Cup victory, emerging as the second-highest goal scorer and the most valuable player of the tournament.
Speaking after bagging the award, Lionel Messi expressed his happiness for clinching the award.
“I’m very happy to be attending this year – especially as it is in the city where I live.
“I want to be able to enjoy it. It was a very special moment in Qatar.
“It won the trophy I was missing. It was special also for my team-mates and the whole country.
“Football has been a way of life for me. Sport in general unites people with values.”
Lionel Messi is the reigning FIFA Men’s Player of the Year and has now added the Laureus award to his trophy and awards shelf.
However, the Argentina international is not at the best moment in his career.
He has been linked to PSG exit in the summer as his contract is set to expire at the end of the season.
He was suspended from the squad last week after he defied the club and undertook a trip to Saudi Arabia but has been reinstated today.
Messi is strongly linked to a move to Al-Hilal in Saudi Arabia with the Saudi club reportedly offering him a record £260m-a-year-deal.