FIFA Awards Nominees and Kobe Bryant Retirement in the Best of the Week

  • FIFA Nominations Week
    1/14 Messi and CR7 nominations to World XI and 2015 Ballon d'Or steal the show. In other sports, Kobe Bryant announced his retirement and Great Britain won the Davis Cup.
  • Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo and Neymar nominated for Ballon d'Or
    2/14 Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo and Neymar nominated for Ballon d'Or: Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo and Neymar have been shortlisted for the 2015 FIFA Ballon d'Or. The award has been dominated by Ronaldo and Messi over the past seven years, with the Real Madrid man bagging the trophy three times and the Argentine taking the honour home on four occasions. Messi is favourite to make it five after a wonderful 2014-15 season which saw him play a lead role as Barça clinched a treble of La Liga, Copa del Rey and Champions League, scoring 58 goals in all competitions.
  • FIFA name World Coach of the Year contenders
    3/14 FIFA name World Coach of the Year contenders: Luis Enrique leads the contenders for this year's World Coach of the Year award, with FIFA having released the three-man shortlist, completed with Pep Guardiola and Jorge Sampaoli. The Barcelona manager lead the Catalan club to a famous treble in his first season in charge, winning La Liga, the Copa del Rey and the Champions League in spectacular fashion.
  • Nominees for World XI 2015 announced
    4/14 Nominees for World XI 2015 announced: FIFPro, in association with FIFA, have announced the final 55 players, 5 goalkeepers, 10 defenses, 15 midfielders and 15 forwards, in contention for a spot on the 2015 World XI. Among the candidates stand Cristiano Ronaldo, Lionel Messi, Neymar, Luis Suarez, Zlatan Ibrahimovic, James Rodriguez, Andres Iniesta, Sergio Ramos, Diego Godin, Keylor Navas and Iker Casillas.
  • FIFA's Ethics Committee wants Michel Platini banned for life
    5/14 FIFA's Ethics Committee wants Michel Platini banned for life: Michel Platini's lawyer has reportedly claimed FIFA's Ethics Committee is seeking to ban the UEFA president for life. Platini's lawyer Thibaud d'Ales has told AFP the Ethics Committee is seeking a lifetime ban for the Frenchman. The demand is said to have been described by D'Ales as a "scandal" and "excessive". A decision on the case is expected next month, with Platini's bid to succeed Blatter as FIFA president on hold until his fate is determined.
  • Florentino Perez confirms Rafael Benitez will keep Real Madrid job
    6/14 Florentino Perez confirms Rafael Benitez will keep Real Madrid job: Real Madrid president Florentino Perez confirmed in a press conference that Rafael Benitez will remain as coach despite defeat in El Clasico. Speculation had been rife that Benitez, only in the job since June, would be moved on after the 0-4 loss to Barcelona. However, Perez called a press conference on Monday evening to clarify the situation. "We want to communicate that Rafael Benitez has all our support and confidence.” said the President, before going on to say work will continue at the club under the helm of the Spaniard.
  • Barcelona 6-1 Roma
    7/14 Barcelona 6-1 Roma: Messi nets two on return to starting XI: Lionel Messi scored twice on his return to the Barcelona starting XI as the European champions cruised to a crushing 6-1 victory over Roma and secured top spot in Group E. Luis Suarez opened the scoring after 15 minutes of the match at Camp Nou on Tuesday and Messi struck three minutes later to put the hosts in complete control. The game was over as a contest just before half-time when Suarez scored a stunning volley, before Messi, Gerard Pique and Adriano added gloss to the scoreline in the second half. Roma saw Edin Dzeko miss a late penalty before then netting a consolation.
  • Shakhtar Donetsk 3-4 Real Madrid
    8/14 Shakhtar Donetsk 3-4 Real Madrid: Los Blancos survive late comeback to edge seven-goal thrille: Real Madrid clinched top spot in Champions League Group A thanks to an enthralling, Cristiano Ronaldo-inspired 4-3 win over Shakhtar Donetsk. Ronaldo opened the scoring after 18 minutes, turning Gareth Bale's lob across goal over the line, before teeing up Luka Modric to smash home a second just after half-time. A fine third goal from Dani Carvajal appeared to end any hopes of a comeback for Shakhtar. Ronaldo steered in his second and Madrid's fourth after some more good work from Bale to cap an impressive display, though Alex Teixeira got a goal back from the penalty spot, before Dentinho's header and Teixeira's clever finish gave Shakhtar hope.
  • Malmo 0-5 Paris Saint-Germain
    9/14 Malmo 0-5 Paris Saint-Germain: Ibrahimovic scores in rout of former club: Zlatan Ibrahimovic scored on his return to former club Malmo as Paris Saint-Germain ran out 5-0 winners at the Swedbank Stadion. Ibrahimovic netted the third goal of a routine victory for the French champions, who are now guaranteed to finish second behind Real Madrid in Group A. A double from the impressive Angel Di Maria, as well as Adrien Rabiot's early opener and a stunning late free-kick from Lucas Moura, gave the scoreline a one-sided, but fair look, as PSG outclassed the pool's bottom-placed side.
  • Bayern Munich 4-0 Olympiacos
    10/14 Bayern Munich 4-0 Olympiacos: Guardiola's men clinch first place with easy win: Bayern Munich secured top spot in Group F of the Champions League in emphatic fashion, recording a 4-0 victory over nearest rivals Olympiacos, despite the dismissal of Holger Badstuber. First-half goals from Douglas Costa, Robert Lewandowski and Thomas Muller meant Pep Guardiola's side had the three points wrapped up inside the first 20 minutes at the Allianz Arena. Yet despite the numerical disadvantage, Bayern added a fourth goal through Kingsley Coman.
  • Nuno resigns from Valencia post
    11/14 Nuno resigns from Valencia post: Valencia coach Nuno Espirito Santo has resigned after his side's 2-0 La Liga defeat at Sevilla. Nuno announced his decision during his post-match media conference, having watched an indisciplined Valencia get thoroughly outplayed at the Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan. The Portuguese explained: "Before the game I spoke with the president, with the owner, Peter Lim and we have spoken after the game and we are all in agreement that the situation is not good, we all want to do the best for the club. It's for that reason that I have taken the decision to leave the club. It's been an honour to coach the club. I want to thank all the players I have worked with, Peter Lim and the fans".
  • Kobe Bryant to retire at end of 2015-16 season
    12/14 Kobe Bryant to retire at end of 2015-16 season: Five-times National Basketball Association champion Kobe Bryant announced that he will retire at the end of the 2015-16 season. Bryant, who is struggling through the worst season of his illustrious 20-year career with the Los Angeles Lakers, said in a poem posted on the Players' Tribune website that "I'm ready to let go". The 37-year-old guard, who is third on the NBA's all-time scoring list, has been plagued by injuries in recent seasons and has a career-worst 31.5 shooting percentage through his first 12 games of the current campaign.
  • Murray defeats Goffin to lead Britain to Davis Cup glory
    13/14 Murray defeats Goffin to lead Britain to Davis Cup glory: Andy Murray secured Great Britain's first Davis Cup title in 79 years by defeating Belgium's David Goffin 6-3 7-5 6-3 in the fourth rubber of the final in Ghent. Murray's nerve held firm to subdue an inspired opponent and give the visitors a winning 3-1 lead.
  • Rosberg ends F1 season on a hat-trick high
    14/14 Rosberg ends F1 season on a hat-trick high: Finally, Nico Rosberg wrapped up the Formula One season on a winning high in Abu Dhabi with team mate and triple world champion Lewis Hamilton second in a record 12th one-two finish of the year for dominant Mercedes. The German's third win in a row, from a sixth successive pole position, dashed Hamilton's hopes of a 44th career victory in car 44 on the 44th anniversary of the founding of the United Arab Emirates.