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FIFA World Cup 2023: Player of the Match and how they are decided

Player of the Match Award: This winter’s World Cup has included a few debatable decisions across the first round of group matches, despite the fact that selecting the best player from a minimum of 22 players is a choice that is frequently clouded in controversy. This modification may be the result of the tournament’s new prize selection procedure, which heavily relies on online fan participation.


FIFA World Cup 2023: Player of the Match Award

On the FIFA+ website, fans may vote for their favourite player to win the Budweiser Player of the Match trophy. Fans from all over the world can vote for their favourite player in each match during the window that opens between the 60th and 88th minutes of play. Users are only permitted to cast one vote every match, and they must be of legal age to register.

However, because there is no means to monitor whether spectators are watching the relevant games, a number of prizes were given to players who may have been less deserved. The tournament’s man of the match winners are shown below, along with what each player performed to earn the honour.

Here are some of the most important player of the match award winners:

Bukayo Saka in England vs Iran

Saka’s selection in place of Phil Foden for England’s opening match raised some eyebrows, but the Arsenal prodigy quickly justified Gareth Southgate’s confidence. A magnificent solo effort for England’s fourth goal came after a soaring volley to make it 2-0, and the Three Lions were cruising against Iran. Saka was given the man of the match prize as England romped to a comfortable 6-2 victory on the first day, despite the fact that there were many other deserving candidates, including Valencia.

Gareth Bale in United States vs Wales

Although Bale’s 82nd-minute penalty, which was Wales’ first World Cup goal since 1958, showed heart and was essential in salvaging a point against the USMNT, it might be a reach to call the 33-year-old the game’s finest player. Bale, like his team, was largely outmatched and outperformed by the US in Al Rayyan.

Mohammed Alowais in Argentina defeat to Saudi Arabia

During the second half of their group opener against Argentina, Saudi Arabia came from behind to defeat Argentina, giving spectators one of the biggest shocks in World Cup history. After the favourites took the lead thanks to a penalty kick from Lionel Messi, the game was turned around by two quick goals from Saleh Al-Shehri and Salem Al-Dawsari after the half. Alowais’ performance in the Saudi goal cannot be understated in a game where goals grabbed the attention. In what was a historic triumph for Saudi Arabia, the shot-stopper was on hand to make some excellent stops to keep his side in the game when it meant the most.

Kylian Mbappe in France vs Australia

When Australia took the lead through Craig Goodwin after 9 minutes, France’s attempt to defend their world championship didn’t get off to the best of starts. Nevertheless, a Mbappe-inspired comeback helped Didier Deschamps’ team quickly demonstrate their talent. The PSG star scored and assisted in a match that included numerous candidates for player of the match. While Olivier Giroud and Antoine Griezmann both scored goals to tie Thierry Henry’s record for France, Mbappe’s ability to block out distractions and shine once more on the largest stage in the world was deserving of the prize.

Luka Modric in Morocco vs Croatia

Another challenging decision for man of the match came after the third “boring draw” of the competition. Although Modric came near with a shot from the edge of the box early in the first half, his overall performance was not particularly impressive. However, the same could be said of the entire match, with neither team truly getting close for the full 90 minutes. Achraf Hakimi might feel unlucky not to have won the prize because all afternoon long, his pace posed a threat to the Croatian defence, which they bravely handled.

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Gavi in Spain vs Costa Rica

With a thrashing of Costa Rica in their opening game of the group, Spain and Gavi made their presence known. The 18-year-old made a spectacular World Cup debut, scoring Spain’s fifth goal of the match with a lovely volley off the post. His goal made him the youngest World Cup scorer ever for Spain and the youngest ever since Pele in 1958. Gavi and fellow youngster Pedri controlled the Costa Rican midfield with their flawless passing and dribbling skills, giving any of them a chance to win the game’s most valuable player title.

Kevin De Bruyne in Belgium vs Canada

In their opening game, Belgium narrowly defeated Canada despite star player Kevin De Bruyne mainly underperforming and appearing like a shell of his former Manchester City self. The midfielder was abruptly named the game’s man of the match despite the underwhelming performance because he garnered the most votes on the FIFA+ website. The player, however, who protested against accepting the award and blamed it on his “name” rather than his performance on the field, was the one who was most astonished.

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Cristiano Ronaldo in Portugal vs Ghana

Ronaldo, who was playing in his first game after being ejected from Manchester United, was able to block out the cacophony and lead Portugal to victory over Ghana by scoring in the fifth World Cup of his career and setting a record for the oldest player to score for his country at a major event. Even while that was unquestionably the game’s central theme, Bruno Fernandes’ effort deserves more credit than he received for receiving the man of the match award. The United midfielder can consider himself unfortunate that he did not receive the honour because he contributed to the goals of Rafael Leao and Joao Felix.

Richarlison in Brazil vs Serbia

Few could be too upset when Richarlison was named the final man of the match across the group stage openers. Richarlison, who was participating in his first World Cup and was selected for the starting lineup despite having recently missed time due to injury, gave coach Tite a magnificent performance in Lusail. While the forward’s second goal was a stroke of genius, flipping the ball up and hitting an acrobatic volley to put Brazil in control, the forward’s first goal demonstrated striker’s instincts. Talk about making a big entrance on stage.

Frenkie de Jong in Netherlands vs Ecuador

Despite Cody Gakpo and Enner Valencia scoring for the second time in as many games, Frenkie De Jong ultimately received the man of the match award. The Barca forward was in charge in the middle of the field, completing passes with an astonishing 93% accuracy compared to his Ecuadorian rivals. While Gakpo or Valencia would appear to be the obvious choices to win their second MOTM of the competition, De Jong’s contribution wasn’t overlooked by fans who cast their votes on the FIFA+ website.

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Robert Lewandowski in Poland vs Saudi Arabia

Few would contest Lewandowski’s selection as the game’s MVP, despite the fact that Poland may have stolen a victory over Saudi Arabia at the Education City Stadium despite the latter being mainly in the lead. Wojciech Szczesny of Poland, who made an incredible double save to stop Salem Al-Dawsari and Mohammed Al-Burayk from the former’s penalty, would be the only other candidate, but scoring your first-ever World Cup goal is deserving of any honour. In a victory that propelled his team to the top of Group C, the Barça striker also contributed an assist to Piotr Zielinski’s first goal for Poland.

Kylian Mbappe in France vs Denmark

Mbappe, who became the first player in Qatar to win the prize twice, advanced the current champions to the next stage with a second-half hat trick against Denmark. For his first goal, the PSG player played a deft one-two with Theo Hernandez on the left, and for his second, he moved forward instinctively to latch onto a generous cross from Antoine Griezmann. Griezmann may feel resentful about losing out on the individual award once more, but scoring a match-winning brace to tie for the game’s most goals is a legitimate justification for winning man of the match.

Lionel Messi in Argentina vs Mexico

Comes the man, comes the hour. Messi stepped up to earn a crucial victory for his team’s prospects of qualifying for the round of 16, just when Argentina needed him the most. The Rosario lad fired a long-range screamer into the far corner of Guillermo Ochoa’s net with little over 60 minutes remaining in the match and the score going for another scoreless draw. While Enzo Fernandez’s individual brilliance was the focus of Argentina’s second goal, the PSG star also contributed an assist. A happy night for the Albiceleste was made possible by a well-deserved victory and a well-deserved man of the match award.

Complete FIFA World Cup Winners List from 1930 to 2022

Alvaro Morata in Spain vs Germany

When he came off the bench for Spain against Germany, Alvaro Morata provided another another example of his abilities. After coming on to replace Ferran Torres early in the second half, the Atletico Madrid striker needed just eight minutes to break the score. To give La Roja a 1-0 lead, Morata scored on instinct after Dani Olmo made a nice pass. Morata has now scored twice in two games for Spain at the 2022 World Cup, earning back the coach Luis Enrique’s confidence in him.

Casemiro in Brazil vs Switzerland

Brazil’s match against Serbia entered a tie coming into the last ten minutes, despite the tournament favourites dominating for significant stretches of the game and even having a Vinicius Junior goal disallowed for offside. Once Casemiro entered the game, the Real Madrid combination Vinicius and Rodygo connected superbly before the latter flicked the ball into his path. The United midfielder then slammed a half-volley goal into the far corner of Yann Sommer’s net. His goal enabled Brazil to claim all three points and become just the second team to advance to the round of 16.

Bruno Fernandes in Portugal vs Uruguay

It shouldn’t take away from Cristiano Ronaldo’s superb performance for Manchester United versus Uruguay whether or not he was able to get the very edge of his quiff onto a beautiful, lofted cross from Fernandes. While Fernandes might frequently fall short for Portugal, especially when paired with Ronaldo, he was in charge tonight, especially in the second half when his team needed him most. His cross that resulted in a goal was placed in the ideal spot, and his run that resulted in a penalty was equally as skillful.

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