The UEFA Best Player in Europe Award was created in partnership with European Sports Media. It recognises the best player, irrespective of nationality, playing for a club within the territory of a UEFA member association during the past season.
Players are judged by their performances during the 2012/13 campaign in all competitions, both domestic and international, and at club and national team levels, by a jury of renowned sports journalists representing each of the UEFA member national associations.
Every journalist involved provided a list of their five best-ranking players from one to five, with the first player receiving five points, the second four points and so on. All 32 players who got at least one vote featured on a long list of nominees published on Tuesday 9 July.
On 6 August, UEFA.com revealed the three players with the most points overall from the first round of voting and who were shortlisted for the final round of voting: Lionel Messi (winner in 2011), Franck Ribéry and Cristiano Ronaldo.
The final vote takes place in Monaco on 29 August during the ceremony for the UEFA Champions League group stage draw, when the same panel of journalists vote live, via an electronic system, to determine the winner from the shortlist of three.
This year marks the introduction of the UEFA Best Women's Player in Europe Award with Nadine Angerer, Lotta Schelin and Lena Goessling up for the accolade on 5 September.
The UEFA Best Player in Europe Award replaced the UEFA Club Footballer of the Year prize, last claimed in 2010 by FC Internazionale Milano's Diego Milito. That accolade formed part of the UEFA Club Football Awards – which also included honours for best goalkeeper, defender, midfielder, forward and coach – and had been presented in Monaco each August since 1998.
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