Forums / The footytube Blog
Order: Newest / Oldest
World Player Of The Year
Araz (Queens Park Rangers) 5 years ago
As a continuation to the Premier League Player of the Season article I’ve decided to venture out of my comfort zone, clench hard and dive outside the Premier League for a quick foray abroad. This is player of the season for 2010/2011, and based on club performances rather than FIFA’s player of the year which is over a different period of time and includes the World Cup, and probably looks at defenders and goal keepers too, something I have no doubt foolishly selected to neglect.

Though you may find this a safe and indisputable subject, like picking the best needle in the hay stack when you know the shiny reflection of the top two renders all the others invisible to the human eye and unworthy of analysis, the stats really are from the world of football fantasy and definitely worth looking at again if only to remind ourselves of the (likely) once in a lifetime treat we were tickled with when we invited Ronaldo and Messi in to our homes for the world’s most awesome football threesome.

The Contenders
Not to say there weren’t plenty of worthy candidates for this title, but being up against Ronaldo and Messi is enough to render even the finest footballing artistes as mere mortals and poor imitations of the new standard for the real deal.

Before you rightly accuse me of being only an occasional observer of the beautiful game outside the shores of this little football island called England, and before we get to the a la carte main event, lets look at the entrée’s that were considered and cast aside.

Xavi and Iniesta
Their career goal scoring records may be short of the modern standard for a player in mid-field (Iniesta has 25 goals in 244 games, with Xavi on 38 in 383) but that means nothing to anyone who knows anything about football, they are without a doubt a couple of the finest mid-field generals of a generation and what they lack in goal volumes they make more than up for in terms of running, turning and controlling matches. Both continued distinguished, pass-machine careers with another fine season and another call to handy man to come and extend the already overcrowded mantle piece to make room for more glorious shiny stuff.

Ozil – 7 goals and 26 assists in 47 appearances
If Stuart Downing is worth £20m to Liverpool then the £12m or so Real Madrid paid for Mesut Ozil’s signature at the start of the season was daylight robbery, in fact Jose should do the decent thing and return him to sender for fear of handling stolen goods. The German produced 6 goals and 19 assists in La Liga as well as a further goal and 7 assists in the Champions league.

Cavani - 26 goals and 6 assists in 35 appearances
Right from the word go Edinson Cavani looked a man on a mission, having scored in his first 4 consecutive games for Napoli he went on hit 26 goals and 6 assists, helping Napoli to 3rd in the league and becoming the clubs highest scoring player (in a single season).

Ibrahimovic – 21 goals and 11 assists in 41 appearances
16 goals in 29 Barca games in the previous season were not enough to stop Ibrahimovic being surplus to exceptional requirements and being farmed out on Loan to AC Milan last season, where he went on to hit 21 goals and create 11 assists in 41 appearances on the way to helping Milan win the title.

Eto’o – 34 goals and 14 Assists in 50 appearances
Eto’o is another fine attacker who called time on his days at Barca after maintaining an outstanding record of 108 goals in 145 appearances. His season at Inter included 21 league goals and 11 assists in Serie A and an impressive 8 goals and 5 assists in 10 Champions league appearances as well as a handful of goals in other competitions maintaining a better than a goal every 90 minutes record at the age of 30.

Gomez – 39 goals and 4 assists in 43 appearances
If goals are your currency then you can’t do any better than Europe’s “other league”, with an average of 2.92 per game the Bundesliga easily produced more goals per game than the Premier League, La Liga or Serie A.

The main culprit in this season long goal scoring frenzy was Mario Gomez who bagged an amazing 28 goals in 27 starts in the Bundesliga as well as an equally ridiculous 8 goals in 6 Champions League starts, though what stopped him entering the realms of Ronaldo and Messi was “only” 4 assists all season.

The Main Event
The records of the main contenders look like this:

Messi Played 53 Goals 51 Assists 21 Combined 72
Ronaldo Played 51 Goals 53 Assists 14 Combined 67

The numbers come from the realms of football wet dreams and championship manager, and to use numbers to decide who the winner should be, would be like trying to make poetry from binary code, but none the less it is worth noting that Messi got his tally using nearly 100 less shots than Ronaldo so if you’re looking for clinical the Argentine edges it.

Messi also gets the nod in terms of honours won (League and Champions League), and on the importance of his goals. With 12 in the Champions League vs. Ronaldo’s 6 Messi got the top scorer award in Europe’s premier competition having started just 11 of those games and maintaining a better than a goal per game ratio.

Even though Ronaldo managed an astonishing 40 league goals on 34 league games and was the top scorer in La Liga, ultimately his team fell short of the title and so over all the award goes to one Lionel Messi, the greatest player of this generation and maybe the next few too, relish every minute you get to watch him play, you’ll be describing it to your grandchildren some day.

Winner - Messi
Runner up - Ronaldo
GreatScot (Rangers)(Footytube Staff) 5 years ago
Yeah I pretty much agree with all of that! Its always going to be a head to head between the two of them and I agree with you Araz, Messi wins it hands down!
Tony (footytube staff) 5 years ago
Not the messi v ronaldo argument again.... Lol, I enjoy watching both to be honest, both have something different to offer, and as you can see by araz's stats, theres really nothing between them.
My answer to the "who's best between messi and ronaldo " has always been, which one would I rather watch, and my answer, even as a man utd fan is messi, he's more of a natural and hard to read what he's going to do next.... Bit like bestie, my kinda player
GreatScot (Rangers)(Footytube Staff) 5 years ago
Yeah I know what you mean, Ronaldo is a product of alot of hard work, he is undoubtedly extremely talented but he has worked hard for it!
Messi is naturally talented, everything looks so easy for him, he is the type of player I like to watch too!
I also enjoy watching a naturally talented midfielder controlling the midfield, its a joy to watch sometimes, I remember a very young Barry Ferguson taking charge of a midfield that included a pretty old Matthaus in a Champions league game against Bayern Munich!
Scholes was another that could control the game from the middle of the park!
Tony (footytube staff) 5 years ago
Ronaldo is just a touch robotic for me, but I really enjoy watching him, and I do think he was a better player at united than he is at real madrid
Redsince63 (Manchester United) 5 years ago
Redsince63 (Manchester United) 3 seconds ago

Have to differ in opinion I think Ronaldo is the more complete player, I think he's physically stronger, I can't see Messi playing a full season in the premier with all the extra games, fixture pile ups and frozen an waterlogged pitches.
Ronaldo is also a powerfull header of the ball although Messi scores headers he's not a natural.
Add to that Ronaldo in comparison has only been at Madrid for a short time, in that time the team set up has been drasticaly changed around at least 2 times, and 2 managers have come and gone, where as Messi is performing of a stable base with a midfield that's been working together for a fair few years!
Ronaldo keeps turning it on and adapts when needed, where as once Messi leaves his mates he's performances suffer
FutureMUplayer (Manchester United) 5 years ago
I prefer Ronaldo and I think he is the more complete player as you guys said but I am afraid Messi will become world player of the year again since he won 2 major trophies while won only one. Unless people will be sick of Messi winning so they will vote for Ronaldo but that's not very likely to happen
Tanmay (Footytube Moderator) 5 years ago
Didn't Messi have 53? Or were two of them World Cub Cup / Supercopa? Nice analysis, although a little bit biased in favour of goalscorers (except for Xavi and Iniesta). Perhaps you should do a "best midfielder of the year" and "best defender of the year" series?
Fiasc0 (Eintracht Braunschweig) 5 years ago
Why, it would be Messi again.
Redsince63 (Manchester United) 5 years ago
What price would anybody put on Ronaldo and Messi?
Considering that 19/20 year old english kid s are going for 19 to 20 mill.
Ill start the bidding at Ronaldo 120 mill & Messi 118 mill sterling
GreatScot (Rangers)(Footytube Staff) 5 years ago
I think you can start the bidding for Messi @ £200m! I think I remember Harry Redknap saying that is this market he was worth at least that!
5 years ago
Messi actually had 53 goals this season and 23 assists. I would pick Messi over Ronaldo though because even though Ronaldo has shown he can adapt quick I think Messi could too. I mean its not like Ronaldos change of teams was something hard to adapt to. Don't forget he has Alonso, and Ozil like he had Scholes and Giggs. It's really not that hard when you have such talented Midfielders to put it together with a forward.

Another point is when people say Messi can't play in the EPL I think that's false. Because he played against the best teams in England the past few years and he's actually had an amazing record against them. 6 goals on Arsenal in the last four games. 2 goals on Manchester in last two games. I believe Messi plays better against defenders who try to rough him up because they're usually bigger than him and are too slow for him. He'll slip through them easily.

I also Say he's more of a team player because he focuses more on his team winning awards while Ronaldo seemed to go for individual awards this season. Messi also commits and helps in the back and middle. One main thing that shows Ronaldo isn't much of a team player is when people from his team score of a shot he took that might have bounced back in front of the goal for a tap in by Benzema or someone he doesn't look happy about it
41200764 (Barcelona) 5 years ago
Ronaldo picked up a quite a few goals at the end of the season against teams that played VERY sloppy
Araz (Queens Park Rangers) 5 years ago
Thanks for pointing out the Messi goal tally, truth is the total goal tally changes depending on who you ask, ESPN have him on 50, and I have seen 53, 52 and 51 from other sources, this is all down to how the company recording the data sees certain contentious goals/own goals and there is even more variation in measuring assists, so there is usually some difference between sources.

The important thing here is to concentrate on the big 50 rather than the little 1
Tanmay (Footytube Moderator) 5 years ago
To build on what 41200764 said, Ronaldo scored his last 8 goals in the last 3 games, when Barcelona had already won the trophy, and Real Madrid was actively playing in such a way as to help him score as many goals as possible. Moveover, Messi was rested for 2 of those 3 matches, while Barcelona was content to draw the games as it concentrated on preparation for the champions league finals. Not trying to take much away from him, since he is a great player, but you do get the feeling that if something was at stake towards the end of the league, Ronaldo would have ended up with less goals and Messi with more
Tanmay (Footytube Moderator) 5 years ago
Sholability (Manchester United) 5 years ago
Messi with argentina is a different messi compared to messi with barca, if you play for a team that has an average 60% possesion, sure you have the best chance.... I have to say ronaldo is an all rounder better player
Araz (Queens Park Rangers) 5 years ago
Much as I love the age old Ronaldo vs. Messi argument please remember this is about "who was the best player in 2010/2011? ". It is a slightly different question to "who is the better player"?

For what it's worth Messi was the better player for me last season (I still dream about how easy he made that little flick over the keeper look in the champs league game against Arsenal).

Although overall you could very well argue that Ronaldo is more physical, faster and far better in the air (he's not just tall but he is actually excellent in the air), and you have to give him credit for finding his feet and adapting so quickly when he went to a Real team that had a Ronolado playing in every position, but when it comes to your own preference none of this counts, it boils down this....

Whether you like watching a magician make a defence vanish before your eyes with an elegant, skilled slight of hand, or if you prefer a gladiator to savage all that stands before him with brute strength and deadly thrust. It is a personal, subjective choice.

For me both are thoroughly enjoyable but the little man edges it every time.
RealAnimalz (Real Madrid) 5 years ago
Both of 'em are magicians
Brandon12 (Manchester United) 5 years ago
Yeah it certainly is not about who is better overall it's who was better this season and that was messi of course both of them are very exciting to watch along with a lot of other players in the world but Barcelona took home the trophies and messi over performed for his team especially with all the assists. But this new real Madrid team is amazing and I think in the next couple of years as long as they keep their coach and players they could give Barcelona some serious competition!

Blueskiesahead (Chelsea) 5 years ago
Alright, here goes nothing.

Ok, so I love Messi. I really do. I personally think that he is without a doubt, the most enjoyable player to watch.

Now on the otherhand, I have never really liked Ronaldo, but those stats are pretty difficult to argue with, and the guy is one of the best dribblers around.

Both of these players deserve to be mentioned as the best players in the world. However, as of this past season, the award should not go to them. Rather, the award should go to (in my own opinion at least) goes to Nemanja Vidic.

Anyone who has seen Vidic play this season will note that he was nearly impossible for forwards to get around. He was basically a one man wall. His intelligence/anticipation was almost super human, and his athleticism is something few players can say that they don't envy. He was vocal this season, a great captain for a United team in desperate need of a consistent inspirational leader on the pitch. I haven't much more to say about him, other than if you disagree with me then fine, I understand your stance. However before you tell me I am wrong, or try saying that there is any one player better than him, watch at least one full game, if not two of his from this season, and analyze everything he does in contrast to other defenders. You'll find that he is simply out of this world.... Unfortunately such a statement is difficult to uphold for two reasons: He is a defender, so his best attributes/contributions are considerably more difficult to see than a player who scores a hat-trick every other week, and again, he is a defender, so it is difficult even to find stats (which no one should ever go by whilst considering any aspect of football unless one accepts such considerations as mere theory) which support this claim to his being the best player of the 2010-2011 season.

Despite the latter fact, I took a few minutes to scrounge up my own set of stats to support my belief that Vidic was the player of the season. Please keep in mind, that some of these stats may be slightly off, as I was the one who pieced them together with only the support of my trusty internet friend, and a calculator. Lets start with the simple stats:

Vidic made 51 total appearances in total this season. Of these, all were starts. He took 10 yellow cards, and 1 red card. That one red card was the result of having seen two yellows in a single game. Having a central defender who was suspended for only 2 games for his conduct during games throughout the season is certainly something many managers would love to have. That in itself speaks volumes about Vidic's intelligence as a defender. He also made one assist, and scored 5 goals. As far as attacking goes, that is pretty decent for a central defender, though nothing spectacular. So far, the statistics show that in theory, Vidic is a pretty reliable defender, who can nab you a few goals throughout the season. What those stats didn't show though, especially through the assist statistic, is this man's ability to disperse play from the back. He only got 1 assist, however I would be most interested to see just how many goals were sprung by a pass from Vidic from the back line leading to a counter attack. Surely, if said passes had counted as assists, that tally would be considerably higher.

Now, on to the tougher stats:

These are the ones which show a much more true evaluation of Vidic's contributions this season. Now keep in mind, that these stats are only from the premier league and the champions league. Vidic missed only 8 games in total for these two leagues. Keep in mind that many of these games were easier matches in the Champions league, which may have skewed said stats. None the less, 93% of the games Vidic played in resulted in either a win or a draw, whereas only 88% of the games he missed were favorable results for United. United had a 0. 88 goals against record while Vidic was on the pitch whereas they had a 1. 00 goals against record when he was absent. Again, when looking at these stats, keep in mind that for the most part, the opposition was considerably easier than most of the opponent Vidic did play against.

So there you go. The stats say a little bit about Vidic's contributions, but hardly even scratch the surface. It is no wonder to me how he was voted as the Barclays Premier League Player of the Season this year, and it should be no wonder as to how I consider him to be the World Player of the Year
Mitchel (Real Madrid) 5 years ago
Its between Messi and Ronaldo. Ozil comes third
Fichado9 (Chelsea) 5 years ago
For me Ronaldo has always been the better player
Luqmaank (Chelsea) 5 years ago
Ronaldo should be first  Messi comes next  And then comes Cavani
RealAnimalz (Real Madrid) 5 years ago
It's quite simple in the end, there is no better, both of 'em are pure work of art.
It's just a matter of taste in the end. I'm more the Ronaldo fan all though I think
Messi 's a genius too.

The thing I love about Ronaldo is the fact that he has two feet, he drops 'em from
Distances and corners you can't imagine with both feet. He also kicks in quite a few
Free kicks and both of those things are things Messi rarely does. He's got his own
Things that Ronaldo doesn't do.

Love 'em both
Tony (footytube staff) 5 years ago
On behalf of the manchester united forum, I put emile heskeys name forward, he has his own following in the utd forum with rob12 being president of the "emile heskey appreciation society"

Now theres a player
FootyRulz (Chelsea) 5 years ago
Messi is definitely my player of the year. 50 goals, 21 assists in one season plus the la liga title and the UEFA champions league. Ronaldo also had a great season based on his individual performances in games but he couldn't lead Real to anything other than the Copa Del Rey last season and I expect Messi to win it for a third consecutive time
RealAnimalz (Real Madrid) 5 years ago
Your right, but you have to take into account that Ronaldo's team got changed again last year with the coming of Ozil, Di Maria, Benzema's return and so on. It looks like the 11 from last year wil lstart again this year and so this will be the first time in quite some years that Real has got a team full of players who know each other on the field, so they will be better than last year. You can see it at the two clasico's we've just had
RealAnimalz (Real Madrid) 5 years ago
Looks like Messi's got it again
Schillo (Chelsea) 5 years ago
Theyr'e both good players, but Ronaldo needs tricks. Messi doesn't need tricks. Messi is best by far

Kick4Life - changing lives through football