Lionel Messi wins 4th FIFA player of the year award

Argentina's Lionel Messi celebrates after scoring against Uruguay

Argentina's Lionel Messi celebrates after scoring against Uruguay during a World Cup 2014 qualifying soccer match in Mendoza, Argentina. (Oct. 12, 2012) Photo Credit: AP

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ZURICH - Lionel Messi became the first four-time winner of the FIFA Player of the Year award after shattering the world record with 91 goals last year for Barcelona and Argentina.

The 25-year-old won for the fourth straight time, beating Real Madrid's Cristiano Ronaldo and Barcelona teammate Andres Iniesta in voting announced Monday.

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Messi received 41.60 percent of the points in votes by national team coaches and captains plus selected media. Ronaldo got 23.68 percent and Iniesta 10.91 percent.

"To tell the truth, this is really unbelievable to get the fourth award. I am so nervous," Messi said in Spanish, wearing a black tuxedo jacket with a white-spotted pattern in an unexpectedly flamboyant touch.

Zinedine Zidane of France and Ronaldo of Brazil were voted FIFA Player of the Year three times before the award merged in 2010 with France Football's Golden Ball, given to the European player of the year. The Golden Ball, or Ballon d'Or, was won three times by Michel Platini of France and Johan Cruyff and Marco van Basten of the Netherlands.

Voting was by national team coaches and captains from each FIFA member country and select media.

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