Messi was a part of the three man shortlist, earlier released by UEFA, which included Cristiano Ronaldo and Virgil van Dijk along with the Argentine.
— DAZN Canada (@DAZN_CA) August 15, 2019
According to the internet leak, Messi won the award with 252 points, ahead of van Dijk, who had scored 224 points. Ronaldo was left a little more behind the two with 181 points. The top three certainly showed that they are a class apart with a difference of 124 points between Ronaldo and the fourth placed Alisson Becker.
The positions of the players from 4 to 10 were announced at the same time as the three-man shortlist.
- Alisson Bekker (Liverpool) 57 points
- Sadio Mane (Liverpool) 51 points
- Mo Salah (Liverpool) 49 points
- Eden Hazard (Chelsea) 38 points
- Matthijs de Ligt and Frenkie de Jong (Ajax) 27 points
- Raheem Sterling (Manchester City) 12
The criteria used by UEFA to determine the winner are based on the players’ performances for both club and country “over the whole season in all competitions.”
The shortlist was compiled by a jury of 80 coaches from teams who competed in last season’s Champions League and Europa League, as well as a selection of 55 journalists. Judges were asked to pick their top three players, with first place getting five points, second getting three, and third being allocated a single point.
Virgil van Dijk was the man of the match in the finals of the UEFA Champions league between Liverpool and Tottenham. He has been excellent for the Merseyside outfit throughout the campaign with his commanding display as a centre-half. But Messi, with his 51 goals and 18 assists, seems to have been named as the UEFA Men’s player of the year ahead of the Dutch defender.
Last season Real Madrid’s Luka Modric won the award beating out Cristiano Ronaldo, and Mo Salah. Lionel Messi finished 5th in the voting, while van Dijk did not make the top ten.
UEFA also previously announced shortlists for six more awards-
Goalkeeper of the Season: Alisson Becker, Hugo Lloris and Marc-Andre ter Stegen.
Defender of the Season: Trent Alexander-Arnold, Matthijs de Ligt and Virgil van Dijk.
Midfielder of the Season: Frenkie de Jong, Christian Eriksen and Jordan Henderson.
Forward of the Season: Sadio Mane, Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo.
Women’s Player of the Year: Lucy Bronze, Ada Hegerberg and Amandine Henry.
Europa League Player of the Season: Olivier Giroud, Eden Hazard and Luka Jovic.
While the basis of selection for all the men’s awards would be the same, that for women’s award differed.
According to UEFA, the shortlist for the Women’s award was done as follows: “The three-player shortlist for the women’s award was selected by the coaches of the eight clubs that reached the quarter-finals of the 2018/19 UEFA Women’s Champions League as well as the coaches of the 12 highest-ranked teams in the latest UEFA women’s national team rankings. Twenty journalists specializing in women’s football and decided by the ESM group were also part of the jury.”