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SBD Global/June 12, 2013/International Football

Bloomberg Sports Study Reveals Lionel Messi Was Football's Most-Skilled Player In '12-13

Lionel Messi was rated as the most-skilled football in '12-13 by Bloomberg Sports.
Barcelona's Lionel Messi was ranked as the most-skilled footballer in the world during the '12-13 season, according to Bloomberg Sports' first "Power Football 50" list unveiled Wednesday. The rankings provide a scientifically-based analysis that evaluates players on skills relevant to their respective positions and encompased the top five leagues in Europe. Messi received a score of 91.25 while Real Madrid's Cristiano Ronaldo was second with a score of 91.16. Bayern Munich's Franck Ribery was third (89.27) followed by Borussia Dortmund's Marco Reus (89.10) and Juventus' Andrea Pirlo (88.62). This season, the strength of the Bundesliga became a popular topic, and the league's quality was well represented in the study as five Bundesliga players made it into the top 20. The rankings for defensive players were compiled using more than 100 types of actions, leading to roughly 1,000 to 1,500 data points for each match. Defensively, this means a left back is rated by calculations that reveal how efficiently he tackles, intercepts passes, and crosses the ball. Meanwhile, his fullback partner is analyzed on a different scale, with formulas that further focus on the player’s aerial ability and clearance rate. For attacking players, the emphasis is on a player’s efficiency in shooting, scoring, and passing. The numbers not only reflect how active an attacking player is, but also the location of a player’s shot, how his shots are assisted, and his ability to perform in adverse situations (starter/substitute, home/away, strength of opposing defense). For a complete list of the top 50, click here. For a complete explanation of the methodology behind the study, click here (BSports).

BSPORTS POWER FOOTBALL TOP 50 RANKINGS
RANK
PLAYER
CLUB
BSPORTS RATING
1
Lionel Messi
FC Barcelona
91.25
2
Cristiano Ronaldo
Real Madrid
91.16
3
Franck Ribery
Bayern Munich
89.27
4
Marco Reus
Borussia Dortmund
89.10
5
Andrea Pirlo
Juventus
88.62
6
Robin van Persie
Manchester United
88.14
7
Giorgio Chiellini
Juventus
87.46
8
Marek Hamsik
Napoli
87.01
9
Gareth Bale
Tottenham Hotspur
87.01
10
Santiago Cazorla
Arsenal
86.37
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