No American players or coaches were among the three finalists for The Best FIFA Football Awards 2018, which were announced Monday morning.
Jill Ellis, who directed the United States to the 2015 Women’s World Cup crown, still coaches the No. 1 team in the FIFA women’s rankings.
Neither was North Carolina Courage head coach Paul Riley, who has guided his team to the National Women’s Soccer League Supporters Shield. The Courage (54 points) leads second-place Seattle Regin FC (41) by an incredible 13 points.
An Australian international, Chicago Red Stars striker Sam Kerr also was not among the final three players selected. Kerr, regarded by many to be the best women’s player on the planet, leads the NWSL with 14 goals after a stellar 2017 season with Sky Blue FC.
Brazilian international and Orlando Pride star Marta, who is 26th in the league with four goals — she also has four assists — was the lone NWSL player on the list.
Cristiano Ronaldo, Marta, Zinédine Zidane, Asako Takakura and Hugo Lloris named amongst the nominees.
The finalists, who were revealed in London, have been recognized for their achievements in elite soccer between July 2017 and July 2018 – a period included the World Cup in Russia.
The winners will be crowned at the Royal Festival Hall (Southbank) Sept. 24.
The shortlisted candidates
The Best FIFA Men’s Player
Cristiano Ronaldo (Portugal/Juventus FC, formerly Real Madrid CF)
Luka Modrić (Croatia/Real Madrid CF)
Mohamed Salah (Egypt/Liverpool FC)
The Best FIFA Women’s Player
Ada Hegerberg (Norway/Olympique Lyonnais)
Dzsenifer Marozsán (Germany/Olympique Lyonnais)
Marta (Brazil/Orlando Pride)
The Best FIFA Men’s Coach
Zlatko Dalić (Croatia/Croatia national team)
Didier Deschamps (France/France national team)
Zinédine Zidane (France/formerly Real Madrid CF)
The Best FIFA Women’s Coach
Reynald Pedros (France/Olympique Lyonnais)
Asako Takakura (Japan/Japan national team)
Sarina Wiegman (Netherlands/Netherlands national team)
The Best FIFA Goalkeeper
Thibaut Courtois (Belgium/Real Madrid CF, formerly Chelsea FC)
Hugo Lloris (France/Tottenham Hotspur FC)
Kasper Schmeichel (Denmark/Leicester City FC)
FIFA Puskás Award
Gareth Bale (Real Madrid CF) – v. Liverpool FC
Denis Cheryshev (Russia) – v. Croatia
Lazaros Christodoulopoulos (AEK FC) – v. Olympiacos FC
Giorgian De Arrascaeta (Cruzeiro) – v. América MG
Riley McGree (Newcastle Jets FC) – v. Melbourne City FC
Lionel Messi (Argentina) – v. Nigeria
Benjamin Pavard (France) – v. Argentina
Ricardo Quaresma (Portugal) – v. IR Iran
Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid CF) – v. Juventus FC
Mohamed Salah (Liverpool FC) – v. Everton FC
FIFA Fan Award
Sebastián Carrera (Deportes Puerto Montt, Chile)
Japan and Senegal fans
The winner of The Best FIFA Goalkeeper Award will be chosen by a specialist panel, while the winners of The Best FIFA Men’s Player, Women’s Player, Men’s Coach and Women’s Coach awards will be determined by the following votes:
• 25% from national team coaches
• 25% from national team captains
• 25% from select media representatives
• 25% online vote
The voting for the FIFA Puskás Award and the FIFA Fan Award is done entirely by the general public, and is now open at www.FIFA.com.
The voting procedure for each of the awards will be supervised and monitored by an independent observer, PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) Switzerland.
The FIFA FIFPro World11 shortlist of 55 players will be announced on Sept. 10 with the final 11 players revealed Sept. 24.