Real Madrid and Croatia Midfielder Luka Modric have won this year’s Fifa Player of the year award, beating challenges from former Madrid Team-mate Rolando and Liverpool and Egypt striker Mo Salah.
The 33-year-old Croatia Captain was named winner of the award Monday at the Best Fifa Football Awards in London.
Modric enjoyed arguably the best year of his career as he won a third consecutive Champions League trophy – before reaching the World Cup final with Croatia.
The midfielder won the Golden Ball award for the best player in the World Cup despite their final defeat by France. He scored in their opening two matches and also set up one goal.
He also won the UEFA Men’s Player of the Year award – beating Ronaldo and Salah in the process.
This is the third edition of the Best Fifa Football Awards, set up after Fifa ended its association with the Ballon d’Or award, which was jointly presented by Fifa and France.
Voting for the player and coach categories was conducted by national team captains and managers, selected journalists and, for the first time, an online poll of fans. Each accounted for 25% of the total.
The excited Modric said, “It is an amazing feeling. I feel so proud and honored. It is a special night for me and a special moment in my career. It is a day to enjoy.
“This recognition that I am receiving from everyone is for me the most important thing. There is no prize for this.
“It is something really special and I am thankful to those who are there behind me and supporting me. So thank you!
The naming of Modric as winner, ends a ten-year dominance of Messi and Ronaldo.
In the women category, Brazil and Orlando Pride forward Marta won the award for the best female player for the sixth time.
She led Brazil to the Copa America in April, as they won all seven matches – although she only scored one of their 31 goals.