Bento, Son Heung-min nominated for 2022 IFFHS best coach, player awards

December 26, 2022

Paulo Bento, former head coach of the South Korean men’s national football team, and team captain Son Heung-min have been nominated for the 2022 Men’s World Best National Coach and Men’s World Best Player awards, respectively, from the International Federation of Football History and Statistics (IFFHS).

According to the announcement by IFFHS on its homepage Sunday (local time), Bento was included among the 20 nominees for the Men’s World Best National Coach, alongside Argentina’s Lionel Scaloni and France’s Didier Deschamps.

vThe nomination of Bento comes following the coach’s significant achievement this year in the FIFA World Cup, as he became the first coach to lead the South Korean team to the round 16 in 12 years.

Other coaches from the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) teams who got a nod were Graham Arnold of Australia, Hajime Moriyasu of Japan and Herve Renard of Saudi Arabia.

In the category, which has been awarded since 1996, former Spanish coach Vicente del Bosque received the most wins with four in 2009, 2010, 2012, 2013. Last year, Roberto Mancini, who led Italy to win the UEFA European Football Championship, took home the honor.

Son was the only Asian player among the 20 nominees for the Men’s World Best Player, announced on Dec. 20.

The Tottenham Hotspur star shared the Premier League’s Golden Boot with Mohamed Salah of Liverpool last year, becoming the first Asian player to lead the top English league in scoring. He captained South Korea to the round of 16 at this year’s FIFA World Cup in Qatar.

Among other nominees are Lionel Messi (Argentina, Paris Saint-Germain), Kylian Mbappe (France, Paris Saint-Germain), Karim Benzema (France, Real Madrid), Erling Haaland (Norway, Manchester City), Harry Kane (England, Tottenham), and Mohamed Salah (Egypt, Liverpool)

Polish player Robert Lewandowski of Barcelona has won in the category in the past two years. He was again nominated for the honor this year, too.