Aitana Bonmati and Lionel Messi, FIFA The Best 2024 Players of the Year Award | Football | Kinds of sports

For Aitana Bonmati it was a pleasant end to a perfect season. The icing on the cake and completing the circle of football success has arrived once again in the form of a trophy. And on the stage of the Eventim Apollo Auditorium in London: Aitana is the best player in the world according to FIFA. He took the baton from his partner Alexia Putellas at a gala that reinvigorated football in a feminine way: all awards were presented by women in honor of the recent World Cup in Australia and New Zealand; The legendary Marta, who retired after the championship, was awarded a special award for her career, and the closing ceremony was presented by the global Aitana, as was the success of the team she led last summer.

“It was an exceptional, unique year that I will remember for the rest of my life. It is a great honor to receive this award, but I am indebted to the teams I belonged to, Barça and the national team, and my teammates. Without you, I wouldn’t be here and I wouldn’t be the player I am. I’m proud to be part of a group of players that are changing the rules of the game.”

The Barça player is the protagonist of 2023, the footballer of the present and the future. She knows this and always wants more. “The ambition doesn’t end there,” he said after being presented with the Ballon d’Or, which he received on October 30. She still has a couple of unexpected and important achievements: winning the overall European Championship with the Spanish team and winning a gold medal at the Olympic Games. At 25, he has more than enough time – and fitness – to push his limits.

For her, awards are not a backpack, they do not weigh her down emotionally or put more pressure on her. “I already demand enough from myself to focus on what is expected of me,” he explained in an interview with this publication. Pure nonconformity and desire – now under control – is the legacy of Cruyff’s 14 years on the field, an introvert turned main attraction and focal point, a literary footballer concerned with social inequality. It’s all about Aitana, who started as the favorite to win the prize. Behind her, Linda Caicedo and Jennifer Hermoso, her teammate and former Azulgrana member, were on the verge of receiving the award. The award recognizes achievements between 1 August 2022 and 20 August 2023, coinciding with the World Cup final in which Spain lifted the trophy.

The showcase seems too small for Sant Pere de Ribes: Ballon d’Or, UEFA MVP and World Cup MVP, as well as winning the Spanish Super Cup, the Champions League (MVP in both competitions) and the Spanish League. . . In total, in a season in which he added 37 games, 18 goals and 20 assists for Barcelona in official matches, although in eight seasons at the Johan Cruyff Stadium he played 247 games and 85 goals while playing for Barça. A long list of accolades and achievements that he hopes to expand on because, despite his contract with Barcelona ending in 2025 and the club focusing on closing the books that end this season, his continuity is a priority.

The club that supported Aitana on the expedition to London. The Catalan woman came out of the plane smiling, wearing a long jacket. There was no shortage of representation from the board – Javi Puig and Elena Fort – and from the team – Jonathan Giraldes, finalist in the category “Best Coach”, Kata Call, finalist in the category “Best Goalkeeper”; and Keira Walsh and Lucy Bronze for being nominated for the FIFA Perfect Eleven. It’s best with legionnaires feeling The Catalan is in the locker room. On the field, he clearly demonstrated his footballing connection with Caroline Graham Hansen, the great, forgotten individual award, although not without merit, and the team’s top scorer: between them they formed a scoring and dangerous duo in front of any defense. This season, Aitana has already scored half as many goals for Barça as last year – nine.

Having put the icing on the cake and transported it from London to Sant Pere de Ribes, he will return to his daily life and train to prepare for the big event: this Wednesday Barcelona will meet Real Madrid in the semi-finals of the Spanish tournament. Women’s Super Bowl. Surely Aitana will want to repeat last year’s feat: win and start another golden cycle.

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