UEFA ignores Messi for the Best Player Award
People in the footballing world often have a short memory. It is an indeed a crime and UEFA is certainly guilty of it. We live in a world, where it is always about the end result and not the process! No wonder, football managers are being sacked left right and center!
UEFA has recently caused a stir, by not including Lionel Messi in the final 3 of the Best player award! The criteria? - Players are judged by their performances in all competitions, domestic and international, and at the club and national team levels throughout the season
Now, let us get straight to the point!
Domestic Competition- Messi had 36 appearances in the La liga last season and he literally played the entire 90 minutes in every single game! We witnessed about 3124 minutes of pure bliss and magic! Not easy for a 30 year old lad, to be honest.
FYI :Remember the time when Suarez was struggling to find his foot during the initial games of the season and Messi compensated by scoring every now and then? The goal at Sevilla away in the 90th minute to salvage a point? The free kick which landed in the top right corner in the dying minutes to get 3 points against Alaves? Finding the net against arch rivals Real Madrid to continue the unbeaten run? All this is a part of the process which contributed to Barcelona's successful campaign last season, where they won 2 titles: La liga and the Copa del ray.
Stats: 34 goals and 12 assists [36 appearances in La Liga]
4 goals in 6 games [Copa del Ray]
National Team -
World cup Qualifiers-I will keep this short!
Your country's chance to qualify for the world cup is hanging by a thread and to add to the misery, you're 1-0 down within the first 3 minutes , in a must win game. What do you exactly need to get through? Well ,a small prayer and a Lionel Messi hat-trick .
FYI :The Argentine missed 8 qualifying games due to injuries and suspension but still managed to be the second highest scorer in the South American qualifiers.
Stats- 7 goals in 10 appearances ( It was a 2 year qualifying campaign)
World cup ,Russia- I will keep this short too! Did we expect Argentina who barely qualified for this world cup, to go ahead and lift the prized trophy? No, because they always lacked direction?Or Maybe, because they have Messi? Or Yes, because they have the likes of Sergio Aguero, Gonzalo Higuain, Angel Dimaria and Paulo Dybala? [Notice,how I could not really pick out a world class defender? ]
FYI : You win a trophy with a team and a plan! Maybe, the plan is where it all went wrong. They still went ahead further in the competition than the likes of Germany/Nigeria/Egypt and got eliminated at the same stage as Spain/Portugal. France was too well balanced a team for their liking !
Stats- 1 goal and 2 assists in 4 games
Champions League : Like most, I believed that the performance at Europe alone is the sole basis of this award, until a friend advised otherwise. But ,it is not that i am shying away from discussing his Champions League performance last season!
FYI: Messi has never scored against the Manuel Neuer or Gianluigi Buffon, he would not be able to function without Xavi, he would not be able to succeed in the English Premier League (apparently, the league with the best football in the world). You must have heard all of that ,haven't you ? So, he did it against Neuer in the 2014-15 Champions league semifinal, he has been functioning quite well without Xavi, and last season he scored a brace against Buffon's Juventus ! As far as the English Premier League is concerned, his brilliant record against the English teams speaks for itself. And Messi, if you are reading this, please stay at Barcelona, for as long as you can! Oh and finally , he put 3 past Chelsea's Thibaut Courtois (who is at Real Madrid now!)
Stats- 6 goals and 2 Assists in 8 games
Check out some of the goals he netted last season in the below video, it is worth watching!
Overall, the Golden shoe & Pichichi award winner had yet another amazing season, winning the league and the cup with Barcelona, and it is surprising to see him being left out of the final 3 of the UEFA men's best player award. A friend pointed out to me, one of the reasons for this decision could be because the other players have been "Trending" more on social media these days (not to say they had a bad season by any means) and we cannot deny that social media and the news have a role in influencing decisions. [The best analogy: If you think about it, Arsenal fan TV (now AFTV) had an indirect role in Arsene Wenger's sacking]
Anyways, best of luck to the final 3. Needless to say, all of them are outstanding individual players!
Having said that, Lionel Messi is too good to be true and we are lucky to see him play week in and week out.
GOD SAVE THE KING!