Top 50 Players in the World #1 – Lionel Messi

by Back Page Football

Lionel Messi – number one.

50-41 | 40-31 | 30-21 | 20-11 | 10-6 | #5 Ronaldo | #4 Iniesta | #3 Sneijder | #2 Xavi | What is the Top 50?

When Lionel Messi looks back on 2010 he’ll struggle to remember all the honours and praise lavished upon him, and now he has the number one spot in the BPF’s Top 50 Players in the World to top it all off. We were unable to get in touch with Lionel in time, but there’s a shiny trophy on route to the Camp Nou as we write this.

Messi was in devastating form throughout the 2009/10 season as Barca won the La Liga with a record 99 points. In total, the striker helped himself to 47 goals in all competitions which secured both the Pichichi award for top scorer in the league as well the European Golden Boot. Of those 47 goals only four were not from open play.

In April he scored four goals in a match for the first time as Barca destroyed Arsenal 4-1 at the Camp Nou in the Champions League quarter-final second leg, a devastating performance that will go down as one of the greatest individual shows in Champions League history.

“He’s like a PlayStation,” said Wenger of Messi after that game.

“I think he can take advantage of every mistake you make. Barcelona are a very good side but of course they have Messi who can make the difference at any moment in the game. He is very young but he can achieve a lot – there are not many players who can score four goals like he did.”

Unfortunately his World Cup wasn’t as spectacular as many of the other names featured on this list. Lionel failed to find the net, but was still an important component to the Argentinian attacking team. It soon got to a matter of ‘when’ rather than if, but a World Cup goal was not to be by the time Diego Maradona’s men had been knocked out resoundingly by Germany in the quarter finals.

Messi started the 2010/11 campaign just like he had finished the previous season, bagging a hattrick in his first run out as Barca destroyed Sevilla 4-0 in the Supercopa de España. It was certainly a sign of things to come, as Messi looks for more silverware in Catalunia.

Despite not getting on the scoresheet, Messi was an integral part of the team which destroyed arch rivals Real Madrid in El Classico in November. Just as the Arsenal game mentioned above, this was a truly devastating performance that will live long in the memories of both sets of fans, for different reasons. Lionel constantly dropped deep to pick up the ball before instigating attack after attack, and claimed a pair of assists for David Villa’s brace. The second assist was particularly pleasurable, as he put his Spanish teammate through on goal with a beautiful defence splitting pass.

The ever knowledgeable and entertaining OptaJoe reported in early December that up to that point Messi had scored a goal every 75 minutes and 23 seconds for Barcelona in all competitions in 2010.

As of 20 February 2011, Messi has scored 41 goals in just 36 games this season, and also has 20 assists to his name.

Below is a list of Messi’s personal honours for 2010:

  • FIFA World Player of the Year
  • FIFA Team of  Year
  • European Footballer of the Year – Ballon d’Or
  • Onze d’Or
  • UEFA Champions League Player of the Year
  • UEFA Champions League Forward of the Year
  • UEFA Champions League Top Scorer
  • UEFA Team of the Year
  • La Liga Player of the Year
  • La Liga Striker of the Year
  • La Liga Foreign Player of the Year
  • La Liga Ibero-American of the Year
  • FIFPro World Player of the Year
  • FIFPro World XI
  • FIFA Club World Cup Golden Ball
  • Argentina Player of the Year
  • Pichichi of the year 2009-2010
  • European Golden Boot 2009-2010

So there you have it, the final piece in BackPageFootball’s Top 50 puzzle. Was Messi’s position at the summit ever really in doubt? As much as many would like  to have seen Xavi receive the top spot, voting proved that the majority of football fans just can’t comprehend looking beyond the little Argentinian. NOW, Lionel Messi is officially the greatest player of 2010. Ballon D’one.

17 Responses

  1. […] Facebook « Top 50 Players in the World #1 – Lionel Messi […]

  2. So 8 of the top 10 play their football in La Liga. I’ve got a feeling this could be partly down to our ‘wonder’ at Barcelona, meaning we get overrate the Spanish league from afar.

    Of course Spain were the deserved champions of the World, but do you really think Pique played better than Vidic (just an example) week in week out during 2010?

  3. Ad says:

    Truly deserved.

    In my opinion watching Lionel Messi play football would have been on par with watching Leonardo Da Vinci paint the Mona Lisa.

    The pitch is his canvas and he paints one of hell of masterpiece, every time he plays.

    The boy is a genius and he is only going to get better. Unbelieveable!

    Fergie sign him up….!

  4. Sean Phleary says:

    My opinion is Lionel Messi will remain the best player in the game not only now but in time to come. we all will wait to see if anybody can dethrone him….

  5. A.M. says:

    only one WC title to go and he will take over Diego as the Greatest of all times.

    Vamos Leo!!

  6. elgingo says:

    Messi doesn’t need a WC trophy to prove he is the best of all time, since the WC is no longer the benchmark for football. The CL is, and if he manages to help Barca win a few more of those whilst playing a key role he could go down in history as the best ever.

    • Varun says:

      WC still IS and WILL be in the future the true benchmark.

      There have been 55 Europeans cups to 19 WC Final matches.

      Reason for this is simple.

      Rarity | Pressure | Mistakes

      CL isn’t rare,
      Countries and Nationalism is still strong in greater parts of the World. Clubs don’t compare.
      You can have 2 off nights and still have a Great chance of winning CL in the coming 5 years.

      You have 2 off seconds,
      You may go your entire living life coming nowhere near the “Golden Globe”, let alone lift it.

    • I think by the time Messi hangs up his boots he will unanimously be the greatest player ever, World Cup or no World Cup.

  7. Abbas says:

    You can’t deny Messi is the best in the world.

    But I have to agree with the comments throughout the countdown that some players are unrealistically ranked higher than others.

    Pique for example. Ferguson doesn’t usually get it wrong with players. He knew Pique couldn’t hack to Premier League so he let him go home. La Liga is such a poor quality league outside of Barca, Real and maybe a couple more, that any half-decent defender can look good. Just look at Marcelo at Real Madrid.

  8. Ash says:

    I dont understand how vidic misses out on this list.. he’s better than pique anyday…and besides how come ronaldo is ranked below iniesta who missed the early months of 2010 with injury?But Leo Messi is without a doubt the best player in the world…i do tink dat the la liga bias could have been avoided…

  9. tito says:

    messi is always the best….skills like no other..though ronaldo scored for real madrid but the truth remained Messi is the best..He played very well but villa wasted some chances.
    Messi is just the best and i am quite sure the best ever in history…

  10. Sishy says:

    His simply marvelous.Wenger’s right when he compared him with playstation.I dont know he does it,he is a player I enjoy to watch.Tiny,short,vulnerable,physicaly reasonable but yet he rolls the football world.Amazing…

  11. melody says:

    to live and die in barca is a places to be i love messi he is my man

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