The Best FIFA Football Awards 2016 heralded a new era for awarding the game's outstanding performers. The inaugural ceremony took place in Zurich, with a host of new awards. This fresh ceremony involved fans more than ever before, with their votes helping decide the winners of The Best FIFA Men's and Women's player and coach awards, as well as the inauguration of a new FIFA Fan Award which recognised an outstanding celebratory fan moment or gesture.
In 2010, FIFA's prize-giving ceremony embarked on a new direction following the merging of the FIFA World Player of the Year award with France Football's Ballon d'Or. The resulting FIFA Ballon d'Or Gala ran annually through to 2015, inclusive, and recognised the best players and coaches from both men's and women's football, among others.
In 1991, in the wake of the previous year's FIFA World Cup™ in Italy, FIFA decided to stage a ceremony to recognise the best players on the planet. This footballing extravaganza steadily expanded, incorporating more and more awards, including the addition in 2001 of one for the top women's player. The last edition of the event in this format came in 2009.