Lionel Messi is the overwhelming choice of World Soccer’s readers as our World Player of the Year.

The brilliant Barcelona and Argentina attacker collected more than 60 per cent of the votes cast in our annual poll – a record in the 30-year history of our awards. The previous highest percentage was for Michel Platini, who garnered 54 per cent of the votes in 1984.

It is the second time Messi has topped the World Soccer poll. He was the victor in 2009, but lost out to his Barca team-mate Xavi last year. Xavi finished third this time, behind Cristiano Ronaldo of Real Madrid and Portugal.

There were three Barcelona players in the top 10 – Messi, Xavi and Andres Iniesta – while five of the top 10 play their football in Spain’s La Liga.

Brazilian starlet Neymar is the only player in the top 10 based outside of Europe. The Santos youngster finished sixth in the World Player poll, but was the clear winner of the Young Player award, ahead of Borussia Dortmund midfielder Mario Gotze, Lille’s Belgian attacker Eden Hazard and Barcelona midfielder Thiago Alcantara.

Barcelona pretty well cleaned up, winning the World Team award and with coach Pep Guardiola chosen as World Manager of the Year. Both of these victories were at the expense of Uruguay, whose coach Oscar Tabarez ran Guardiola close in the managerial vote.

Last year’s Manager of the Year Jose Mourinho finished a distant fifth in the award, ahead of his successor at both Porto and Chelsea, Andre Villas-Boas, who was sixth. Manchester United manager Alex Ferguson, a three-times winner of the World Manager of the Year award, was third.

Votes were cast from more than 40 countries, including Canada, New Zealand and Turkey, to once again demonstrate the global nature of the World Soccer awards.

World Player of the Year % of vote

1 Lionel Messi (Barcelona & Argentina) 60.2
2 Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid & Portugal) 9.3
3 Xavi (Barcelona & Spain) 7.6
4 Luis Suarez (Liverpool & Uruguay) 5.6
5 Andres Iniesta (Barcelona & Spain) 2.6
6 Diego Forlan (Atletico Madrid/Internazionale & Uruguay) 2.5
7 Neymar (Santos & Brazil) 2.3
8 Falcao (Porto/Atletico Madrid & Colombia) 2.2
9 Zlatan Ibrahimovic (Milan & Sweden) 1.8
10 Robin Van Persie (Arsenal & Holland) 1.6
Others 4.3

Manager of the Year

1 Pep Guardiola (Barcelona) 33.1
2 Oscar Tabarez (Uruguay) 31.4
3 Alex Ferguson (Manchester United) 10.6
4 Jurgen Klopp (Borussia Dortmund) 4.6
5 Jose Mourinho (Real Madrid) 3.3
6 Andre Villas-Boas (Porto/Chelsea) 2.6
7 Roberto Mancini (Manchester City) 2.5
8 Giovanni Trapattoni (Republic of Ireland) 2.4
9 Joachim Low (Germany) 1.4
10 Massimo Allegri (Milan) 0.8
Others 7.3

Team of the Year

1 Barcelona 44.2
2 Uruguay 25.3
3 Porto 6.6
4 Santos 6.1
5 Borussia Dortmund 5.2
6 Napoli 4.3
7 Manchester City 2.1
8 Manchester United 1.9
9 Estonia 1.7
10 Lille 1.2
Others 1.4

Young Player of the Year

1 Neymar (Santos & Brazil) 29.2
2 Mario Gotze (Borussia Dortmund & Germany) 26.2
3 Eden Hazard (Lille & Belgium) 17.8
4 Thiago Alcantara (Barcelona & Spain) 9.1
5 Paulo Henrique Ganso (Santos & Brazil) 3.3
6 Phil Jones (Manchester United & England) 3.1
7 Christian Eriksen (Ajax & Denmark) 2.8
8 Jack Wilshere (Arsenal & England) 2.6
9 Mario Balotelli (Manchester City & Italy) 2.4
10 Tom Cleverley (Manchester United & England) 1.2
Others 2.3

  • Alejandro Moreno

    My favorite soccer player is Lionel Messi, but Luis Suarez is good too. I wish i could play with them>:)

  • Jackson omarion

    Hello leds ñ gentlemen….! Messi z de mor dan de best playe n da world…! Ox kept up coz dis year we wan 2 se mess z de best pleyr 4 once again

  • Fabio

    Hello Friends,
    see my list of top 50 players in the history http://youtu.be/pVKJRX6NCAA

  • Alhassan Abdul Salam

    The number one player on the planet, i luv this guy.BARCELONA oh!!!! i luv it

  • shuvo

    messi will win,and make a hat-trick for the first time

  • Joel

    Messi is d best player on earth while Pep is d best coach 4 now… Kip doin ur best Barca…..4…..lyf

  • Casper

    Yes he is the best

  • Oscar

    Messi is the # 1 !!!

  • M10

    Sure, Barca is the best team of all time N MESSI is the best of all time( sorry Diego).

  • tuffymacca

    Many ,many congratulations to peerless,imperious,majestic King Lionel Messi ,Professor Pep Guardiola & the invincible BARCA DREAM TEAM !

  • predu

    messi is the best player of all time.

  • Viking

    I’m glad Estonia got voted 9th in “Team of the Year”, guys worked so hard this year. Process has been so big. Congratz getting in top 10.

  • MAKHFUD ALBISRI

    I AGREE,LIONEL MESSI IS THE BEST PLAYER OF THE YEAR

  • Aivaro

    Estonia?!!

  • Estlander

    Thank you all for voting for Estonia, they really did a great job this year :)

    Cheers :)

  • estonia

    Jeahhh ,Estonia is tha best :D !!!

  • Immanuel k. katamba

    What a greatest player of our times. Mess deserves to be honoured becuse he is a legend. God bless you my hero.

  • staout abdessamad

    because is the best team

  • Shishu K. Rai

    The best player I’ve ever seen. And I grew up watching Diego Maradona.

  • THE BEST

    This is the first time a Player gets the podium five times in the World Soccer Awards. CONGRATULATIONS L10NEL MESSI!!!!!