FIFA announces replacement for Ballon d’Or awards

FIFA have announced a replacement for the Ballon d’Or award. The Ballon d’Or award’s association with FIFA ended earlier this year, as L’equipe did not renew their contract to name the FIFA World Player of the Year award that FIFA used to host. However, FIFA have announced a new set of awards that will simply be titled, ‘The Best FIFA Football Awards’.

After a spell of five years where Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi have shared the award, FIFA have opted to release their own awards, with Gianni Infantino saying “This event will be about football and its most passionate participants – players, coaches and fans. It is a new event with new approaches to celebrating the game we all love.”

FIFA have announced the following awards will be instituted and awarded:

The Best FIFA Men’s Player 2016
The Best FIFA Women’s Player 2016
The Best FIFA Men’s Coach 2016
The Best FIFA Women’s Coach 2016
The FIFA Puskás Award 2016
The FIFA Fair Play Award 2016
The FIFA Fan Award 2016
FIFA FIFPro World11

FIFA unveil schedule of the awards

The Ballon d’Or shortlist has already been announced by L’Equipe and Cristiano Ronaldo remains the favourite to win, having won the UEFA Champions League with Real Madrid and Euro 2016 with Portugal. L’Equipe have returned to a format of voting with only journalists taking part. However, FIFA have retained their policy of voting from captains and coaches of their member countries.

Following criticism though, FIFA will also have an online ballot of fans, while journalists will also take part. FIFA have also introduced a FIFA Fan Award, involving the most passionate football supporters.

FIFA also announced the schedule of the entire process :

Tuesday, 1 November: ten candidates for The Best FIFA Women’s Coach 2016
Wednesday, 2 November: ten candidates for The Best FIFA Men’s Coach 2016
Thursday, 3 November: ten candidates for The Best FIFA Women’s Player 2016
Friday, 4 November: 23 candidates for The Best FIFA Men’s Player 2016

Friday, 4th November : Voting process begins

Tuesday, 22nd November : Voting process closes

Friday, 2nd December : Final list of 3 nominees in each award category

The awards gala will take place in FIFA’s headquarters in Zurich on January 9th, 2016.

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