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Lionel Messi is considered the best player in the world - and despite so many individual awards, he is still a remarkable team player. This Argentinian striker's footballing career started in 1995 at Newell's Old Boys. At the age of 13, Lionel crossed the Atlantic and joined Barcelona. Messi made spectacular progress at each of the different age levels, climbing through the ranks to Barça C, followed by Barça B and the first team in record time. In the 2003-2004 season, when he was still only 16, Messi made his first team debut in a friendly with Porto that marked the opening of the new Dragao stadium. Lionel recently surpassed the record of most goals in a calendar year with a brace against Real Betis. This took his tally to 86 goals in a calendar year - with 3 games still to go. The Argentine has won the Ballon d'Or award three times - and is favourite to win a fourth come January.
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