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From the Editor

Robert Lewandowski with his 2021 Golden Shoe trophy

At the end of 2020, voting for the World Soccer awards was easy. Bayern Munich, spearheaded by the prolific Robert Lewandowski and expertly managed by Hansi Flick, made voting in the men‘s categories straightforward, as did Lyon and their coach Jean–Luc Vasseur in the women‘s categories, while Chelsea striker Pernille Harder won the inaugural Women‘s Player of the Year award. 

This year, however, it was a far more complicated – at least in the men‘s awards – with the Champions League, Copa America and European Championship all throwing up contenders in the minds of our panel. 

Ultimately, voters felt that Lewandowski’s extraordinary goalscoring record made him a worthy winner, ahead of double European champion Jorginho, or Lionel Messi, who finally ended his long wait for a major international trophy.

We‘ll let you discover the rest of the winners yourself. In addition to the players, managers and teams of the year, we‘ve also picked out the People of the Year for 2021, paying tribute to the individuals that made a mark on the world of football across this year.

Jamie Evans, Assistant Editor 

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Contents

THE WORLD THIS MONTH

People in the news…on and off the pitch

4 In pictures
12 On the radar
13 Jim Holden Southgate the right man
14 Keir Radnedge Problems for the calendar
16 Jonathan Wilson Chelsea‘s Lukaku conundrum
18 Tom Saintfiet AFCON guest columnist
19 ESM XI
20 Ins & Outs and obituaries

EYEWITNESS

22 Uruguay Copa Libertadores final
26 Malta

AFCON 2021

30 Special Report Binationaux or dual nationality players at AFCON
34 Tournament preview
37 Schedule
38 Face to Face Cameroon manager Toni Conceicao
40 Six potential stars
42 Group guides

AWARDS 2021

50 2021 Awards
54 Men’s World Player of the Year
56 Men’s World Manager & World Team of the Year
58 Women’s World Manager & World Team of the Year
59 Women’s World Player of the Year
60 People of the Year
67 Farewells

WOMEN’S FOOTBALL

68 African Champions League

MY BIGGEST GAME

98 Teddy Sheringham

WORLD SERVICE

Exclusive reports from our worldwide network of correspondents

73 Comoros Heroes on the pitch, chaos off it
74 UEFA 2022 World Cup qualifiers
76 CAF 2022 World Cup qualifiers
78 CONMEBOL 2022 World Cup qualifiers
80 Asia AFC Champions League final
82 South America Copa Sudamericana final 

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© 2022 Kelsey Media Ltd

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