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29.10.2008 Football News

Ronaldo Is No. 1

By Daily Guide
Ronaldo Is No. 1

Manchester United star Cristiano Ronaldo has been voted player of the year by his fellow professionals at FIFPro -- putting him on course for a hat-trick of top accolades.

The international players' union, which has 57,500 members, announced on Monday that Ronaldo, who scored 42 goals last season when United won both the Champions League and Premier League, had topped their poll.

"To be recognized by my fellow professional players worldwide, coming from over 50,000 players is amazing," the Portugal winger said.

Ronaldo is also a strong contender to win the FIFA award and the European Golden Ball organized by the French magazine France Football.

"I would like to thank my teammates and coaches and everyone involved at Man United and the national team, as well as my family and friends for their support," Ronaldo said.

"Thank you also to FIFPro for this award and for your work in protecting the interests and welfare of players around the world."

Five of the Spanish stars who won the 2008 European Championship were named in FIFPro's team-of-the-year lineup.

With all but one of the players coming from either the Spanish or English leagues, the lineup includes Real Madrid's Iker Casillas and Sergio Ramos, Barcelona's Carles Puyol and Xavi Fernandez and Liverpool's Fernando Torres.

Barcelona's Argentina forward Lionel Messi is also in the team and Champions League winner Manchester United has Rio Ferdinand and Ronaldo.

Liverpool also have Steven Gerrard; John Terry is the only Chelsea player on the lineup and AC Milan's Kaka is the lone star from Italy's Serie A.