The CIES Football Observatory of Barcelona has named Lionel Messi as the best performing forward in Europe’s top soccer leagues for 2015! His full name is Lionel Andrés Leo Messi Cuccittini (most people just call him Messi), and he has already scored seventeen goals this year—proving his award-winning skills.
The CIES study looked at all sorts of areas within each player’s soccer game. Being named a best performer isn’t just about being a great player; the study also looks at who was the best teammate. The judges watched for shooting skills such as how well players lined up for a shot and how often they scored. Next they noted how often that same player would get his teammates into a spot where they had the chance to get a goal. After that, the judges watched to see who challenged opponents the most, passed the best, and took away goal opportunities from the other team by stealing and intercepting the ball. All these traits are what put Lionel Messi at the top of the list.
Messi has been playing soccer all his life, and has been playing for FC Barcelona since he was seventeen years old. For the last six years, he has been nominated over and over again as Player of the Year from many different organizations. No matter where he’s playing, Messi always seems to find a way to get the fans cheering. In fact, Messi is one of the only players that has scored a goal in every championship game that he has ever played in. That’s a lot of hard work!
The cool thing about Lionel Messi is that everyone says that he cares more about his team than he does himself. Although he usually gets most of the goals, Messi is always sure to thank his team and let them know how important that they were to the success of the game. Even when it looks like they’ve got the game won, Messi encourages everyone to give 100% until the last second. That’s teamwork!