LAUSANNE: The Argentina Men’s National Football Team has been named AIPS Team of the Year for the 2023 edition.

This achievement follows their victory in 2022, as La Seleccion has been awarded for the second time in a row by the International Sports Press Association. It is a result from a poll by AIPS, where a panel of 405 journalists from 107 countries voted for the Champions of 2023.

They scooped first place with a total amount of 666 votes collected. Second place has been reached by Manchester City Football Club, which scooped the first Treble in their history as they have won everything they could this year, from the UEFA Champions League title to Premier League, from FA Cup to the UEFA Super Cup and the FIFA Club World Cup (440 votes). Third place has been scooped by the Spain women’s football national team after having won their first ever World Cup title in the FIFA Women’s World Cup (308 votes).

At the end of 2022, for the third time in their history, the Argentina National Team lifted the World Cup trophy in a dramatic final won after penalties against the France National Team: After a 3-3 marked after 120 minutes of intense football, the penalties shootout crowned Lionel Messi and his teammates Champions of the World in the unique scene of Doha, Qatar. It was, as said, the third World Title for La Selection, after historic wins in 1978 in Argentina, in 1986 in Mexico.

This year Argentina kept high enthusiasm as they marked an (almost) perfect campaign through 2023: 9 wins with no draws and only one loss against Uruguay by Lionel Messi’s team, a squad that scored in these ten matches a total of 23 goals, conceding only two marks to La Celeste. The reigning World Champions can therefore look up with great expectations for the upcoming Copa America in 2024, considering also their status as Defending Champions of the trophy.

The year 2023 marked Lionel Messi once again as an undisputed champion: By winning the Ballon d’Or for the eighth time in his career, he showed another time why he is considered one of the most legendary icons in sports. 2023 also marked another successful year for Argentina’s coach, Lionel Scaloni: Under his management, La Selection scooped the 2021 edition of the continental tournament – the 47th edition played in Brazil – which crowned Argentina as Champions of South America for their 15th time.

From there on, they never stopped one of the most successful campaigns in the history of the game: As a matter of facts, under Scaloni’s management, the team recorded a streak of 36 consecutive games with no defeats, making the second best unbeaten streak established by a national team, surpassed only by that of Italy with 37.

AIPS Best Teams of 2023 (votes and percentages):

1. Argentina men’s football national team – Football, Argentina – 666 votes (18,27%)

2. Manchester City Football Club – Football, England – 440 votes (12,07%)

3. Spain women’s football national team – Football, Spain – 308 votes (8,45%)

4. South Africa men’s rugby national team – Rugby, South Africa – 286 votes (7,85%)

5. Germany men’s basketball national team – Basketball, Germany – 234 votes (6,42%)

6. Hungary women’s sabre fencing national team – Fencing, Hungary – 227 votes (6,23%)

7. Real Madrid Club de Fútbol – Football, Spain – 175 votes (4,80%)

8. Jumbo Visma cycling team – Cycling, The Netherlands – 169 votes (4,64%)

9. FC Barcelona women’s team – Football, Spain – 164 votes (4,50%)

10. Turkey women’s volleyball national team – Volleyball, Turkey – 149 votes (4,09%)

11. Denver Nuggets – Basketball, USA – 140 votes (3,84%)

12. USA 4×100 women’s relay – Athletics, USA – 129 votes (3,54%)

13. Bayern Munich Football Club – Football, Germany – 114 votes (3,13%)

14. Norway men’s biathlon national team – Biathlon, Norway – 94 votes (2,58%)

15. Uruguay U20 men’s football national team – Football, Uruguay – 78 votes (2,14%)

16. England women’s football national team – Football, England – 77 votes (2,11%)

17. Australia women’s football national team – Football, Australia – 61 votes (1,67%)

18. France men’s rugby national team – Rugby, France – 53 votes (1,45%)

19. India men’s badminton national team – Badminton, India – 41 votes (1,12%)

20. The Netherlands rowing national team – Rowing, The Netherlands – 40 votes (1,10%)

AIPS members from the following nations participated in the Best of 2023 poll (countries are listed in alphabetical order):

Afghanistan, Albania, Algeria, Argentina, Australia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Bangladesh, Belgium, Benin, Bolivia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Brazil, Bulgaria, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Canada, Central African Republic, Chile, China, Colombia, Croatia, Cuba, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Democratic Republic of Congo, Ecuador, Egypt, Estonia, Ethiopia, Finland, France, Gabon, Gambia, Georgia, Germany, Ghana, Greece, Guatemala, Honduras, Hong Kong, Hungary, India, Iran, Iraq, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Ivory Coast, Japan, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Kuwait, Latvia, Lebanon, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malaysia, Malta, Mauritania, Mexico, Moldova, Mongolia, Montenegro, Morocco, Nepal, The Netherlands, Nicaragua, Nigeria, Norway, Pakistan, Panama, Paraguay, Perù, Poland, Portugal, Puerto Rico, Qatar, Republic of Korea, Romania, Russia, Rwanda, San Marino, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Serbia, Sierra Leone, Slovak Republic, Slovenia, Spain, Sudan, Suriname, Sweden, Switzerland, Tanzania, Thailand, Togo, Tunisia, Turkey, United Kingdom, Ukraine, Uruguay, USA, Venezuela, Yemen.