RealSport's FIFA 23 TOTY XI - Some BIG names miss out

fifa 23 toty mbappe messi

fifa 23 toty mbappe messi

The Team of the Year (TOTY) event is nearly upon us in FIFA 23 Ultimate Team, and voting is now underway!

Have your say on who should make this year's XI from the full list of nominees released by EA on Monday, 9 January.

RealSport's writers have selected their team and you can check out each selection below.

Rice, Rice, Baby...

There may be a slight England/West Ham bias in my XI, but Declan Rice and Jude Bellingham feature in my midfield trio alongside Luka Modric.

Modric won the Champions League and enjoyed a superb World Cup in Qatar, so he is a must for me.

fifa 23 toty xi realsport michael wicherek
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Fellow Galacticos Thibaut Courtois, Eder Militao, and Karim Benzema also feature, with Benzema joining Kylian Mbappe and Lionel Messi in a frightening front three.

Trying to ignore recency bias, Joao Cancelo and Achraf Hakimi will be my full-backs, with Josko Gvardiol partnering with Militao in the heart of defence.

Selection by Michael Wicherek, Senior Editor.

No GOATs Allowed

Ok, let's start with the obvious exclusion of Lionel Messi.

I won't get into the argument of how overly-hyped he is (I am by no means saying he is a bad player and recognise he is one of the best ever), but I find it hard to include him over Kylian Mbappe, Karim Benzema and Erling Haaland, who have all been on another level over the previous year.

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The midfield three could well have included Saka, Rice, or Valverde, but I think Modric is a must-have, with Bellingham improving all the time and showing great class in the World Cup, and De Bruyne having a top year in the Premier League.

Despite a recent drop in form and poor World Cup performances, Cancelo couldn't have missed out, with Trippier a catalyst in Newcastle's transformation, and young Gvardiol continuing to impress at all levels.

Selection by David Luff, Sports Writer.

Young Guns

As a die-hard Arsenal fan, Bukayo Saka and Martin Odegaard are the first names on my team sheet, with Jude Bellingham completing the midfield trio.

PSG duo Kylian Mbappe and Lionel Messi have proven themselves to be the two best players in world football, so they feature in attack, of course.

Even I couldn't ignore the goal machine that is Erling Haaland, who pips Gabriel Jesus to a place in the XI (just).

fifa 23 toty xi realsport mark pangalos
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Achraf Hakimi and Joao Cancelo occupy the full-back positions, with veteran Thiago Silva partnering with Croatian sensation Josko Gvardiol in central defence.

Thibaut Courtois' Champions League heroics for Real Madrid have earned him a spot in my TOTY squad ahead of Liverpool keeper Alisson.

Selection by Mark Pangalos, Sports Writer.

A little bit of Everything

It's hard not to be influenced by this year's World Cup, but it's worth remembering that a number of players had sensational Champions League campaigns.

Karim Benzema is the easiest pick of the bunch, even if his year did end in a very public feud with the French national team.

Whilst some above are lucky to have club players mentioned, as an Ipswich fan I wasn't so fortunate, even if Sone Aluko is the greatest player to ever play the beautiful game.

fifa 23 toty xi realsport matthew francis
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Away from that, defenders were hard to pick but I can't look past Tomori and VVD, both of whom turned in impressive performances this year.

My wildcard pick is Federico Valverde and whilst he may not have outshone some stars, he was a key figure in a Real Madrid side that captured the Champions League despite mounting odds.

Selection by Matt Francis, Community Engagement Lead

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