Originally written December 05, 2012 on O-Posts:
Messi_ballon_dor_8842
It can be argued that the football stars of 2012 are amongst the best players of all time as they get professional training from a younger age than previous generations, sports science is advancing all the time and there is more money in the game meaning better facilities for those at the top. Footballing nations all over the world are producing players that can put in world class performances week in week out on a scale never seen before, here is a rundown some of the very best of them.   Lionel Messi Top of the list when it comes to football’s top stars is Lionel Messi. At only 25 he already has over 300 career goals and has enjoyed breaking a number of records in 2012. Messi is now Barcelona’s top goal scorer of all time and his 14 goals in the Champion’s League was the most in one season scored by any player. As of the end of November, he was also within 3 goals of Gerd Muller’s record of 85 goals in a calendar year having already beaten the great Pele’s landmark of 75 goals in a season.   Cristiano Ronaldo Perhaps the best attacking midfielder of the year has been Real Madrid’s Cristiano Ronaldo. He helped his team win the Spanish league scoring 46 goals, helped them get to the Champion’s League Semi-final and had a good year internationally, helping his country Portugal to a respectable semi-final spot in EURO 2012.   Sergio Ramos While known by many as a right back, Sergio Ramos’ performances for both club and country at centre-half this year have been outstanding. Ramos, who has commanded a regular place in the Madrid team since he was 19, was instrumental in helping them win the league, and in helping Spain win EURO 2012.   Gianluigi Buffon Despite a heavy 4-0 loss to an irresistible Spain in the final of EURO 2012, Italy and Juventus’ veteran goalkeeper, Gianluigi  Buffon, is arguably still the best around. He was a key figure in his club not only winning the 2011/12 title, but going the whole season unbeaten. The 34 year old Italian national captain, nicknamed ‘Superman,’ has become a legend at the club since joining in 2001, and has recently revealed he intends to end his career there.   Robin Van Persie Robin Van Persie has been another shining star of football in 2012 and while he won no major trophies, has been seeing some of the best form of his life. He finished the 2011/12 season as the English Premiership’s top scorer with 30 goals for Arsenal, and has been unstoppable in front of goal for Manchester United in the first part of the 2012/13 season.   Neymar Probably the best young football star of 2012 is the 20 year old Brazilian Neymar. Having already played over 200 games for his club Santos, the Olympic silver medallist looks set to go from strength to strength for the rest of the season and looks set to be one of football’s brightest stars for years to come.   Morgan Payne is a football lover. He also maintains his own personal afl tips blog. Please like O-Posts on Facebook You can follow O-Posts on Twitter @OPosts
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Eli on Geno Smith: If fans yell at you, you probably deserve it

49ers players come out in support of Jim Harbaugh

Raiders reportedly expected to make a run at Jon Gruden

FCC unanimously ends sports blackout rule

Michael Phelps arrested for DUI

Is hiring Mack Brown a real possibility for SMU Mustangs?

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

NFL: Abdullah should not have been penalized for praying

Belichick: Pats 'didn't play well enough at all' against Chiefs

Astros new manager A.J. Hinch: ‘Goal is to win championships’

Oakland Raiders fire Dennis Allen after 0-4 start

Did Roger Goodell’s bodyguard assault a photographer?

Kobe Bryant, Deron Williams engage in war of words

This weekend in NFL stupid

Kobe: Iggy Azalea has had better career than Swaggy P

College football's post-Week 5 playoff projection

Oregon to don pink-themed unis for breast cancer awareness

Is DeMarco Murray the best RB in the NFL?

WATCH: TBS sends up 'Boom Goes the Dynamite' with promo

Ilya Bryzgalov takes photos with fans while on the bench

NFL Awards: Week 4 edition

The best and worst MLB players in September

Tracking demanding career paths of all Top 25 head coaches

NFL Power Rankings: Week 4

Strahan to make cameo as stripper in 'Magic Mike' sequel

Soccer News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

This weekend in NFL stupid

Kobe chooses Iggy over Swaggy P

Raiders to make a run at Jon Gruden?

Is DeMarco Murray the NFL's best RB?

Ilya Bryzgalov takes photos with fans while on the bench

NFL Awards: Week 4 edition

Michael Phelps arrested for DUI

NFL admits error on Abdullah penalty

Best, worst MLB players in Sept.

College FB coaches, tough career paths

NFL Power Rankings: Week 4

Raiders fire Dennis Allen after 0-4 start

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.