Man of the match award is a key feature in every sport and it is no different at the 2018 Fifa World Cup. Named after sponsor Budweiser, the player of the match accolade is chosen by fans across the world through online platforms.
This is an old process by Fifa to engage fans to the game and on several occasions there have been controversies regarding a few selections. The recent one was Portugal captain Cristiano Ronaldo’s selection as the man of the match after their hard-fought win against Morocco in Moscow Wednesday.
Many claimed he was not in control of the whole match, except the moment when he scored the all-important goal early in the first half. On the field, Morocco were the better team. Even Ronaldo’s teammate, goalkeeper Rui Patricio was a good contender for the title. Patricio made some wonderful saves to ultimately keep the Moroccans at bay.
Through Fifa’s digital platforms on Fifa.com, the FifaApp and Twitter, fans can easily vote for the player they feel is deserving of the individual post-match award in Russia. If you are following the greatest show on earth on Fifa.com, you will be able to cast your vote in the Live Blog during every match. Voting opens when the second half begins and you can vote, and even change your choice, until the game ends.
This system often sees popular figures or goal-scorers win the man of the match award. But as it is, most of the fans don’t do their proper homework or in-depth analysis. Only on the rare cases does a goalkeeper land the award in the event of some outstanding saves.
If you notice the last few matches of this World Cup, all the big names who scored for their country in the form of Spaniard Diego Costa, Dane Christian Eriksen, Uruguayan Luis Suarez and Englishman Hary Kane claimed the award.
In many leagues or championships, they have football pundits or commentators who decide the best player of the match but perhaps in Russia, voting by fans more often than not will ensure that the most deserving player might just miss out on the accolade.