Lionel Messi misses out on Uefa Team of the Year after fans vote him the 13th best player of 2013, adding to Ballon d'Or woe
Messi is not named for the first time since 2007 while is arch-rival Cristiano Ronaldo tops his Ballon d'Or award off with a seventh consecutive inclusion
Wednesday 15 January 2014
First Lionel Messi missed out on the Ballon d’Or award for the first time in five years. To make matters worse, he finished second to his arch-rival Cristiano Ronaldo. But when it looked like the worse was over, Messi’s week has just taken a turn for the worse.
Not only did he not win the award, he has missed out on selection in Uefa’s Team of the Year altogether. Finishing 13 in the vote, Messi was not selected in the starting XI for the first time since 2007.
Even more surprising is that not one player from Barcelona makes the cut even though they claimed the 2012-13 La Liga title, with three players from rivals Real Madrid included in Cristiano Ronaldo, Gareth Bale and Sergio Ramos.
Four Bayern Munich players feature in the form of Manuel Neuer, Philipp Lahm, David Alaba and Franck Ribery, while a fifth player hailing from the Bundesliga joins them in Borussia Dortmund’s Marco Reus.
Even though there is just one Premier League player included in Arsenal’s Mesut Ozil, there is a case to be argued that Bale spent more of the year with Tottenham than the Spanish side, although his form in Madrid has been exceptional since his £86m move.
Ronaldo’s inclusion means he is named for the eighth time in his career, with an unrivalled seven consecutive nominations, and much like the FifPro Team of the Year, not one Englishman is included.
The team was chosen by more than 6.3m Uefa.com users, who decided that Messi was no longer worthy of inclusion. Neuer, Alaba and Reus appear for the first time in their careers, whiel the left-back is the first ever Austrian to be named in the side – Reus is the maiden representative from Boruissia Dortmund to feature.
The Uefa.com team of 2013: Manuel Neuer (Bayern Munich and Germany); Sergio Ramos (Real Madrid and Spain), Thiago Silva (Paris St Germain and Brazil), Philipp Lahm (Bayern Munich and Germany), David Alaba (Bayern Munich and Austria); Franck Ribery (Bayern Munich and France), Marco Reus (Borussia Dortmund and Germany) Mesut Ozil (Arsenal and Germany), Gareth Bale (Real Madrid and Wales); Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid and Portugal), Zlatan Ibrahimovic (Paris St Germain and Sweden).
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