Best FIFA Football Awards winners: Luka Modric becomes first in 10 years not named Ronaldo or Messi to win men's award

Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo's run as the best men's player, stretching back 10 years, is over. Ronaldo and Messi had split the award (FIFA World Player of the Year - 2008-09; Ballon d'Or - 2010-15; Best FIFA Men's Player - 2016-17) every year since 2008, but now there is a new winner.

At The Best FIFA Football Awards on Monday, Real Madrid and Croatia star Luka Modric took home the Best FIFA Men's Player award. The midfielder won the Champions League once again with Real last season, with Ronaldo as his teammate, and he also helped guide his national team to a sensational runner-up finish at the 2018 World Cup. Here are your winners over the last 10 years (notice what sticks out like a sore thumb):

  • 2018 - Modric 
  • 2017 - Ronaldo 
  • 2016 - Ronaldo 
  • 2015 - Messi 
  • 2014 - Ronaldo 
  • 2013 - Ronaldo 
  • 2012 - Messi 
  • 2011 - Messi 
  • 2010 - Messi 
  • 2009 - Messi 
  • 2008 - Ronaldo  

The former Tottenham man was looked at as the co-favorite with Ronaldo for the award, with Mohamed Salah also in contention. Though Ronaldo and Salah had better statistics than him as they play higher up on the pitch, the cerebral superstar was voted the winner after a year he surely won't forget.

Ronaldo did not attend the awards ceremony in London, while Modric and Salah were in attendance. In the end though, it's not a huge surprise to see Modric win and will be refreshing for some fans who expected either Messi and Ronaldo to win it every year for another 5-10 years.

As for the other awards, here are all of the winners:

  • Best Goalkeeper - Thibaut Courtois (Chelsea/Belgium)*
  • Best Coach - Didier Deschamps (France)
  • Best Women's Player - Marta (Orlando Pride/Brazil)
  • Best Women's Coach - Reynald Pedros (Lyon)
  • Puskas Award - Salah (Liverpool/Egypt)
  • FIFA World 11 - David De Gea; Dani Alves, Sergio Ramos, Raphael Varane, Marcelo; Modric, N'Golo Kante, Messi, Eden Hazard; Kylian Mbappe, Ronaldo). 

*Courtois joined Real Madrid in the summer. 

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Roger Gonzalez is an award-winning writer based in Virginia that has covered pro soccer from Europe's top clubs to Argentina's first division. Roger started out his pro soccer writing career with Full Bio

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