The finalists for FIFA's 'The Best' 2019
With three weeks to go before the final winners are announced, eight of the 'The Best' awards already have their final three.
The announcement was made on Monday inside the mythical San Siro (Milan), and it left us with three big names: Virgil van Dijk, Leo Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo.
Liverpool's Dutch defender, who won the UEFA award for best player last season, is perhaps the big favourite after an outstanding season which brought him the Champions League trophy under Jurgen Klopp's management.
Meanwhile, Leo Messi was left without European glory after a tough elimination in the Champions League semi-finals, but he did end up conquering LaLiga and scoring 51 goals in 50 games (in addition to providing 19 assists). He was also decisive in the Copa America, although Brazil eliminated his 'Albiceleste' in the semifinals.
Cristiano Ronaldo is still one of the best, although he does not have as much advantage as in previous years. His season at club level was not as prolific in terms of goals (28 in 43 games), but he won Serie A, the Italian Super Cup and also won the UEFA Nations League with his national team.
Jurgen Klopp, Pep Guardiola and Mauricio Pochettino were included in the shortlist of nominees for the Best Coach award, with the German standing out as the big favourite after taking the Champions League back to Liverpool after 14 years. For his part, Guardiola won a historic domestic treble in England and Pochettino gave the big surprise by taking Tottenham to the final of Europe's most recognised competition.
The Puskas Award did not forget Leo Messi and his great goal against Betis. In addition to the Argentine star's goal, Juan Fernando Quintero's goal (River Plate) against Racing Club and Daniel Zsori's stunning strike (Debrecen) against Ferencvarosi are also on the list of nominees.
The goalkeepers also had protagonism in the event, with the Premier League dominating nominations. Alisson (Liverpool) and Ederson (Manchester City), both Brazilians, entered the final list with Barça's Marc-André Ter Stegen (Barcelona).
As for women's football, the three nominees for 'The Best' shone in the World Cup. One of them, Lucy Bronze, did so with England, and the other two with the eventual champions, the United States' Alex Morgan and Megan Rapinoe, with the latter as the clear favourite.
As for the best coaches in women's football, FIFA highlighted Jill Ellis (USA), Phil Neville (England) and Sarina Wiegman (Netherlands). The three goalkeepers who reached the podium are: Christiane Endler (PSG), Hedvig Lindahl (Kristianstads DFF) and Sari van Veenendaal (Atlético de Madrid).
Finally, in the FIFA Fan Award, the prize for fans, the nominees were a Palmeiras fan called Silvia Grecco, the Dutch women's team fan club and Justo Sanchez, a Rampla fan.