Lionel Messi named along with Virgil van Dijk in FIFA Men’s XI as Arsenal duo picked in women’s side
Four Premier League players were included as FIFA named the Men’s World XI.
Casemiro, Virgil van Dijk, Kevin De Bruyne and Erling Haaland all earned their spots in the team, while Joao Cancelo, now on loan at Bayern Munich, was also picked.
Unsurprisingly, Kylian Mbappe and Lionel Messi also made the cut, with both shortlisted for the main men’s award, though there was no place for men’s goalkeeper of the year Emi Martinez as Thibaut Courtois got the nod.
Karim Benzema was also selected in attack, as FIFA decided defensive solidity was not a requirement in the team.
In the Women’s World XI, somwhat more balance, Arsenal duo Leah Williamson and Beth Mead both earned their places after a stellar year for club and country.
Fellow Lionesses Lucy Bronze and Keira Walsh were also included, as was Chelsea forward Sam Kerr.
Alexia Putellas, who beat Alex Morgan and Mead to the best women’s player award, was naturally picked too, with Mary Earps perhaps unfortunate to miss out.
Men’s World XI: Courtois; Hakimi, Van Dijk, Cancelo; Casemiro, Modric, De Bruyne; Mbappe, Messi, Benzema, Haaland.
Women’s World XI: Endler; Bronze, Williamson, Renard, Leon; Walsh, Putellas, Oberdorf; Morgan, Kerr, Mead.