Lionel Messi named best soccer player in Europe

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Barcelona's Lionel Messi celebrates his second goal against Zaragoza during their Spanish first division soccer match at La Romadera stadium in Zaragoza. March 21, 2010.

MONTEVIDEO, Dec. 29 -- Argentine Lionel Messi was named the best soccer player in Europe for the second straight year by European newspapers, said the Uruguayan newspaper El Pais, in a survey published on Wednesday.

In the 25th edition of the contest, the Barcelona star won 67 votes, 21 more than his Spanish colleague Xavi Hernandez, who had one more vote over Andres Iniesta, who is also from Spain. Xavi and Iniesta both play for Barcelona.

Portugual's Real Madrid star Cristiano Ronaldo, who was second in 2009, came in fourth in the voting, said El Pais.

Goalie Iker Casillas from Spain (Real Madrid), Brazilian Maicon (Internazionale) and Dutch Wesley Sneijder (Internazionale), were fifth to seventh.

Jose Mourinho (Real Madrid) from Portugal was named the best coach in Europe for the fourth time, triumphing over his colleague, Joseph Guardiol, who won the title in 2009.