Lionel Messi: PSG Star Receives Boost After Rafael Nadal Concedes Defeat at 2023 Laureus World Sports Awards

Lionel Messi: PSG Star Receives Boost After Rafael Nadal Concedes Defeat at 2023 Laureus World Sports Awards

  • Tennis great Rafael Nadal has thrown his weight behind Lionel Messi for the 2023 Laureus World Sports Awards
  • The Spaniard was nominated alongside the Argentine and a host of stars including Kylian Mbappe and Stephen Curry
  • The Grand Slam tennis star, who is a self-confessed lover of the football veteran, has in the past praised him

Hours after being nominated for the 2023 Laureus World Sports Awards, tennis star, Rafael Nadal has conceded defeat.

The Spaniard was among the high-profile sports personalities who were nominated to vie for the prestigious award after winning the Australian and French Open tournaments.

Rafael Nadal, 2023 Laureus World Sports Awards, Lionel Messi, Kylian Mbappe, Mondo Duplantis, Steph Curry, Max Verstappen
Rafael Nadal poses with the Rolland Garros Musketeers' Cup after winning the French Open for a record 14th time. Photo: Aurelien Meunier.
Source: Getty Images

Those wins saw him become the male tennis player with the greatest number of majors, although Novak Djokovic drew level this year with his triumph at the Australian Open.

However, Nadal has seemingly backed off from contention this year and instead supported Lionel Messi for top honours.

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Messi's World Cup run

Messi is undoubtedly a frontrunner for the title, having inspired Argentina to their first World Cup since 1986 last year.

By winning the tournament on his fifth attempt, the seven-time Ballon d'Or winner was able to get every available trophy to him in his illustrious career.

Nadal feels Messi deserves the award more, with the Paris Saint-Germain forward also angling for an eighth Ballon d'Or title later this year.

"An honor to be nominated again to the Laureus Sportsman of the year… but… this year… let’s go Messi, you deserve it."

Nadal compares himself to Messi

Nadal is a big fan of the Argentine. Sports Brief has previously reported that the tennis legend has compared himself to Messi.

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The Spaniard was recently asked about his potential retirement date and he made a subtle reference to the Argentine, who is still playing at a high level despite his age.

Deep comparisons can be drawn between football star, Messi and tennis star, Nadal. The two have served excellence and longevity in their professions.

Full list of Laureus nominees

Messi will face off with his Paris Saint-Germain teammate, Kylian Mbappe for the 2023 Laureus World Sports Awards, Sports Brief has reported.

The two were nominated for the award alongside other heavy hitters like Formula 1 champion, Max Verstappen and four-time NBA champion, Stephen Curry.

Messi will get competition from Curry, who led the Golden State Warriors to a fourth NBA title in eight years and Verstappen led a near-perfect championship run.