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2011 FIFA Ballon D'Or: Messi, Xavi and Ronaldo Finalists

MessiDavid Ramos/Getty Images
Roberto Alvarez-GallosoChief Writer IDecember 5, 2011

Jerome Valcke (FIFA Secretary General) and Francois Moriniere (Director for France Football) announced that Lionel Messi (FC Barcelona), Xavi (FC Barcelona) and Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid) are finalists for the 2011 FIFA Ballon d'Or award to be given in 2012.

The news was published in the on-line magazine Goal.com along with nominees for other positions. Pep Guardiola (FC Barcelona), Jose Mourinho (Real Madrid), and Sir Alex Ferguson (Manchester United) made the final cut for the 2011 FIFA Coach of the Year.

The nominees for the 2011 FIFA Women's Player of the Year are Marta (Brazil/Western NY Flash), Homare Sawa (Japan/INAC Leonessa), and Abby Wambach (USA/magicJack). The other nominees are Pia Sundhage (USA) and Norio Sasaki (Japan) for FIFA's Female Coach of the Year.

It is hoped that Messi would join the elite club of three-time winners with Ronaldo (Brazil) and Zinedine Zidane (France). While many people complain that Messi has won too many awards, his actions in the year 2011 helped Barca win the UEFA Champions League as well as other tournaments.

The coach that deserves to win the Coach of the Year Award is Pep Guardiola. Before anyone thinks about a bias towards FC Barcelona, Guardiola deserves to win coach of the year for obtaining 12 out of 15 titles at the club.

Hope Solo deserved to win the 2011 Ballon d'Or in Female World Football for her positive contributions to the game. Since she is not among the list, the award should go to Homare Sawa for her performance in the 2011 FIFA Women's World Cup.

It remains to be seen what will transpire in January (2012) during the awards ceremonies.

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