Megan Rapinoe wins best women's player at FIFA Awards

The Best FIFA Football Awards 2019 were handed out on Monday, after months of voting and whittling down the finalists. It’s been a big year in soccer worldwide, with the recent Women’s World Cup taking center stage with its high level of play, outstanding personalities, and overwhelming popularity.

A number of awards were presented at the Milan ceremony, including best men’s player, best women’s player, best men’s and women’s coach, best goalkeeper, and more. So who took home the hardware?

Megan Rapinoe wins best women’s player award

The competition was stiff, but USWNT star Megan Rapinoe won the trophy for best women’s player. She beat out her USWNT teammate Alex Morgan and England’s Lucy Bronze.

Rapinoe had a phenomenal year, with the 2019 FIFA Women’s World Cup being the highlight. She finished the tournament with six goals and three assists, and won both the Golden Boot and the Golden Ball.

Rapinoe isn’t just a force on the pitch, though. She’s an outspoken advocate for equality, LGBTQ+ rights, and equal pay for women, and she was never shy about telling people what she stands for. She and many of her USWNT teammates are currently suing U.S. Soccer for failing to pay them as much as the USMNT, a lawsuit that was filed earlier this year. She’s unafraid to call out people in power like Donald Trump and FIFA leadership.

2019 was Rapinoe’s year, and her dominance both on and off the field made it clear that it’s her world and we’re all just living in it.

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Megan Rapinoe through the years
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Megan Rapinoe through the years
Megan Rapinoe, a member of the United States women's national soccer team, speaks to reporters during a news conference in New York, Friday, May 24, 2019. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)
New Zealand defender Ria Percival (2) steals the ball from United States midfielder Megan Rapinoe (15) during the first half of an international friendly soccer match in Commerce City, Colo., Friday, Sept. 15, 2017. (AP Photo/Jack Dempsey)
United States' Megan Rapinoe, right, celebrates with Sydney Leroux, left, after the U.S. beat Japan 5-2 in the FIFA Women's World Cup soccer championship in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, Sunday, July 5, 2015. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)
From left, United States' Megan Rapinoe, Lauren Holiday, and Carli Lloyd celebrate after Lloyd scored her second goal of the match against Japan during the first half of the FIFA Women's World Cup soccer championship in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, Sunday, July 5, 2015. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)
GLASGOW, SCOTLAND - JULY 28: Carli Lloyd (R) of USA celebrates with team-mates Megan Rapinoe (C) and Heather Mitts after scoring their third goal during the Women's Football first round Group G match between United States and Colombia on Day 1 of the London 2012 Olympic Games at Hampden Park on July 28, 2012 in Glasgow, Scotland. (Photo by Stanley Chou /Getty Images)
HARRISON, NJ - JUNE 20: Megan Rapinoe #15 of the USA plays a corner kick against Korea Republic during their game at Red Bull Arena on June 20, 2013 in Harrison, New Jersey. (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - NOVEMBER 20: U.S. women's national soccer team player Megan Rapinoe poses for a portrait at the USOC Rio Olympics Shoot at Quixote Studios on November 20, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CA - JULY 14: (L-R) Professional soccer players Becky Sauerbrunn, Kelley O'Hara, Megan Rapinoe, Ali Krieger, Ashlyn Harris, Alyssa Naher and Abby Wambach attend BODY at ESPYs at Milk Studios on July 14, 2015 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Michael Kovac/Getty Images for ESPN)
REIMS, FRANCE - JUNE 24: Megan Rapinoe of the USA celebrates scoring a goal from the penalty spot after a VAR during the 2019 FIFA Women's World Cup France Round Of 16 match between Spain and USA at Stade Auguste Delaune on June 24, 2019 in Reims, France. (Photo by Daniela Porcelli/Getty Images)
REIMS, FRANCE - JUNE 11: Mallory Pugh of the USA celebrates with teammate Megan Rapinoe after scoring her team's eleventh goal during the 2019 FIFA Women's World Cup France group F match between USA and Thailand at Stade Auguste Delaune on June 11, 2019 in Reims, France. (Photo by Alex Caparros - FIFA/FIFA via Getty Images)
SANTA CLARA, CALIFORNIA - MAY 12: Megan Rapinoe #15 of United States is challenged by Lebohang Ramalepe #2 of South Africa during their International Friendly at Levi's Stadium on May 12, 2019 in Santa Clara, California. (Photo by Robert Reiners/Getty Images)
United States' Megan Rapinoe celebrates after scoring her side's second goal during the Women's World Cup quarterfinal soccer match between France and the United States at the Parc des Princes, in Paris, Friday, June 28, 2019. (AP Photo/Francisco Seco)
LYON, FRANCE - JULY 07: Megan Rapinoe of the USA celebrates scoring the first goal from the penalty spot during the 2019 FIFA Women's World Cup France Final match between The United State of America and The Netherlands at Stade de Lyon on July 07, 2019 in Lyon, France. (Photo by Richard Heathcote/Getty Images)
LYON, FRANCE - JULY 07: Megan Rapinoe of the USA celebrates with the FIFA Women's World Cup Trophy, the Golden Boot and The Golden Ball following the 2019 FIFA Women's World Cup France Final match between The United States of America and The Netherlands at Stade de Lyon on July 07, 2019 in Lyon, France. (Photo by Alex Grimm/Getty Images)
LYON, FRANCE - JULY 07: Ashlyn Harris, Megan Rapinoe and Ali Krieger of the USA celebrate with the FIFA Women's World Cup Trophy following the 2019 FIFA Women's World Cup France Final match between The United States of America and The Netherlands at Stade de Lyon on July 07, 2019 in Lyon, France. (Photo by Alex Grimm/Getty Images)
U.S. women's soccer player Megan Rapinoe celebrates with the FIFA Women's World Cup trophy at City Hall after a ticker tape parade, Wednesday, July 10, 2019 in New York. The U.S. national team beat the Netherlands 2-0 to capture a record fourth Women's World Cup title. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)
LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA - JULY 10: Megan Rapinoe speaks onstage during The 2019 ESPYs at Microsoft Theater on July 10, 2019 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)
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Lionel Messi wins best men’s player award

We narrowly avoided a Liverpool sweep on the men’s side, as Lionel Messi took home the best men’s player award. Messi won the award five times when it was the Ballon d’Or, but this is technically his first “Best” award from FIFA.

And it’s certainly deserved. He is considered by many to be the best soccer player in the world, winning the European Golden Shoe as top goal scorer. He helped Barcelona win its 26th La Liga title, the 10th of his career, and helped Argentina reach the Copa America semifinals.

He’s won pretty much every award imaginable, and now the FIFA best men’s player award will no longer be missing from his mantle.

Mother of blind soccer fan wins FIFA fan award

Silvia Grecco, who lives in Brazil, won the FIFA fan award for her efforts to support the fandom of her son, Nikollas, who is blind.

Since Nikollas can’t see, Silvia narrates matches for him and becomes his eyes. Nikollas is also autistic, and when Silvia brings him to Palmeiras games, he comes alive.

Brazilian soccer legend Marta was in attendance at the ceremony, and was seen wiping away tears when Silvia was given the award.

Ellis wins best women’s coach, Klopp takes home men’s trophy

Jill Ellis may be stepping down as USWNT coach, but she’s going out with the FIFA award for best women’s coach. Ellis became the first woman to win back-to-back World Cups when the USWNT took home the top prize this summer, which basically nullified anyone else’s chances.

Jurgen Klopp of Liverpool beat out Pep Guardiola of Manchester City and Mauricio Pochettino of Tottenham Hotspur to win the best men’s coach award. Klopp led Liverpool to its sixth Champions League title, and used his speech to thank his bosses for spending money on good players.

“I'm really proud to be the manager of such an incredible bunch of players,” he said.

Alisson, van Veenendaal win goalkeeper awards

Sari van Veenendaal is the inaugural winner of the best women’s goalkeeper award, which has never been given out before. Van Veenendaal is one of the Dutch team captains and helped lead her team to a runner-place finish at the Women’s World Cup in France. She also won the tournament’s Golden Glove.

Alisson earned the award on the men’s side. The Brazilian helped lead Liverpool to a Champions League title in his first season with the club, and started for the Copa America champions.

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