Messi named Best Player in Europe

Lionel Messi has won the inaugural UEFA Best Player in Europe

award for the 2010-11 season.

Messi beat his Barcelona teammate Xavi Hernandez and Cristiano

Ronaldo of Real Madrid in a poll of journalists from across

Europe.

Argentina forward Messi scored 53 goals as he and Xavi led

Barcelona to the Champions League and Spanish titles.

A panel of 53 journalists drawn from each of UEFA’s member

nations voted ahead of the draw for this season’s Champions League

group stage.

UEFA created the honor after ”France Football” magazine

combined its traditional European award with FIFA’s world player

prize.

Messi won that award in January when Xavi placed third.