Argentina’s phenom Lionel ‘La Pulga’ Messi has been awarded Player of the Year from FIFA. This is Messi’s second consecutive Player of the Year Award. Brazil’s Marta continued her winning streak, as the top female futboller, by claiming her fifth FIFA Women’s World Player of the Year award at the FIFA Ballon d’Or Gala held at the Zurich Kongresshaus on Monday evening.
José Mourinho, and Silvia Neid were the winners of the FIFA World Coach of the Year for Men’s Football and FIFA World Coach of the Year for Women, respectively. Mourinho was recognized for his role coaching the Real Madrid team and Neid for her role as German Women’s national team coach.
The awards were decided based upon the results of a poll in which captains and head coaches of the national teams as well as several international media representatives selected by France Football Magazine, voted for candidates in each of the four categories.
Messi had a baffling 2010, scoring an impressive total of 60 goals, and taking the Spanish league title with his club Barcelona. Messi obtained 22.65% of the votes, ahead of his club team-mates Andrés Iniesta (17.36%) and Xavi (16.48%).
Marta thrilled fans in the Women’s Professional Soccer League in the USA, where she won the Golden Cleat and was voted best player of the season with her team, the FC Gold Pride.
José Mourinho, who led the Inter of Milán to the UEFA Champions League, the Italian Serie A and the Italian cup before transferring to Spain’s Real Madrid in the summer of 2010, won with 35.92% of the votes, ahead of Spanish national coach Vicente del Bosque, who received 33.08%, and Barcelona’s Pep Guardiola (8.45%).
As chosen by over 50,000 professional players from all over the world, the current “dream team” would consist of Goalkeeper Iker Casillas (Spain); Defenses Maicon (Brazil), Lúcio (Brazil), Gerard Piqué (Spain) and Carles Puyol (Spain); Wesley Sneijder (Netherlands), Xavi (Spain) and Andrés Iniesta (Spain) in midfield; and Lionel Messi (Argentina), Cristiano Ronaldo (Portugal) and David Villa (Spain) as strikers.
The FIFA Puskás Award for the “most beautiful goal” of the year as voted by internet users all over the world through FIFA.com went to Turkey’s Hamit Altintop for his fantastic goal in the UEFA EURO 2012 qualifying match between Kazakhstan and Turkey played in Astana on 3 September 2010.
The FIFA Fair Play Award was given to the Haiti Sub-17 women’s team, who had to endure many hardships following the earthquake which struck their country in January 2010, during which their head coach sadly passed away. The team showed great courage and made it to the final round of the CONCACAF.
Below, a compilation of reasons why, Messi is once again the best soccer player in the world.