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World’s Best Player … Again!

January 8th, 2013

Lionel Messi. Photo credit: Creative Commons Flickr user prettyfriendship

Soccer superstar Lionel Messi had a great start to the new year!

He was awarded 2012’s world’s best soccer player award yesterday. He’s won the award four years in a row now — the first time anyone’s ever done that!

USA’s Abby Wambach won FIFA’s World Player of the Year award on the women’s side. She scored 5 goals at the London Olympics this past summer to help the U.S. women win the gold medal.

Abby Wambach. Via Ampatent/Wikimedia Commons

They were presented with the FIFA* Ballon d’Or trophies in Zurich, Switzerland.

Messi accepted his award saying, “To tell the truth, this is really unbelievable to get the fourth award. I am so nervous.”

Wambach added, “Individual honors only happen if you have great teams and great people who have given you the chance to be here.”

Messi scored an incredible world record breaking 91 goals last year between his two teams, FC Barcelona and Argentina’s national soccer team. The previous record was 85 goals set 40 years ago. Even more dramatic, Messi was injured when he was just one goal short of breaking the record and it wasn’t clear whether he’d be able to finish the season.

To see a great interactive graphic that breaks down Messi’s goals,  click here  to be taken to The Telegraph newspaper’s website.

Is Messi the best soccer player ever? What do you think?

*FIFA is the organization that oversees soccer internationally. It’s pronounced fee-fa, and the letters stand for Fédération Internationale de Football Association (English: International Federation of Association Football). In many countries outside of the U.S. soccer is referred to as football.

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