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10.01.2011 20:01

Messi is still the best

Roger Bogunyà

Leo Messi is the winner of the 2010 FIFA Ballon D’Oro after taking the trophy for the second year on the run. Messi won 22,65% of the votes, ahead of teammates Andrés Iniesta (17,36%) and Xavi Hernández (16,48%).

La Masia has its second Ballon D’Oro and so does Leo Messi . The Argentinean picked up the award, given by FIFA and the France Football magazine this evening in Zurich after his boss Pep Guardiol announced “Ladies and gentleman, the winner is... Lionel Messi!”, confirmation, if needed that Messi is simply the best – something Xavi and Iniesta both admitted before the ceremony.

Close run thing with a final surprise

2011-01-10_PREMIO_09.JPGMessi took the award with the minimum difference, getting 22,65% of the votes, just five points more than Iniesta(17,36%) and six more than Xavi (16,48%) and even for Leo himself the win came as a big surprise.


It’s been a thrilling and exciting day; after ‘La Gazzetta dello Sport’ published last month that the award was going to Iniesta, there was plenty of speculation all day that it would be Xavi who was going to win, with hardly any commentators going for Messi. The Argentinean’s win is all the more remarkable given his country’s poor showing in South Africa and the fact that until now, no FIFA World Player of the Year award had gone to a player in a World Cup year, who’d not won that trophy.

Epoch defining

2011-01-10_PREMIO_22.JPGLeo Messi’s win marks him out as an epoch defining player, joining greats such as Cruyff, Van Basten, Platini, Beckenbauer, Keegan, Ronaldo, Rummenigge and Di Stéfano in taking more than one Ballon D’Or and becoming the youngest to have done so. It is more than 20 years since the last player –Van Basten- took the trophy two years on the run.

La Masia wins all the plaudits

2010-10-30_FCB_-_SEVILLA_FC_002.jpgThe three Barça players appearance in the final of the award marked the confirmation of Barça’s trademark style, born out of La Masia and perfected on the Nou Camp pitch. It’s not just Messi, Iniesta and Xavi either, with Piqué and Puyol, as well as David Villa included in the FIFAPro World XI, as La Masia won the all the plaudits at the Zurich Kongresshaus this evening.
Messi is still the best

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The votes
Behind the Barça trio, Wesely Sneijder came fourth with 14% of the votes followed by Diego Forlán, Cristiano Ronaldo (4%), Iker Casillas (3%) and David Villa (2%) who finished 8th. Click here if you want to see who the national team coaches and captains and journalists voted for in the 2010 FIFA Ballon d'Or.

Josep Guardiola came in third in the Manager of the Year Award with 8,45% of the votes, behind José Mourinho (35,92%) and Vicente del Bosque (33,08%). Click here if you want to see the voting details.

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