One of them is Queens Parks Rangers midfielder Joey Barton, who has made it clear that, in his opinion, the 27-year-old was nowhere near the best player in the tournament.
Posting his thoughts on social networking site Twitter, the former Manchester City and Newcastle United player listed a number of players who he thinks were better than Messi.
How did Messi win that????— Joseph Barton (@Joey7Barton) July 13, 2014
Thomas Müller. James Rodriguez. Mascherano. Kroos. Hummels. Sanchez. All better at this tournament than Messi.— Joseph Barton (@Joey7Barton) July 13, 2014
But for me Arjen Robben was the best individual at this World Cup. Messi should send that in the post to him.— Joseph Barton (@Joey7Barton) July 13, 2014
Still baffled by Messi winning 'best player' award. Is it true he never had 1 shot on target in the knockout stages?— Joseph Barton (@Joey7Barton) July 14, 2014
Barton is well known for his activity on Twitter and has often made statements that have not gone down well with football followers.
However, on this occasion, the 31-year-old might just be right. It would be a mistake to undermine Messi’s importance to this Argentina team, especially the goals he scored in the group stage, but there are others who were better than him.
Barton’s choice of Robben is an interesting one. Despite Manchester United striker Robin van Persie kicking off the World Cup campaign for the Netherlands in style, it was the former Chelsea winger who maintained his consistency and was a key figure in the Oranje reaching the final of the tournament.
|Team||Pos||Goals||Goal Assist||Ontarget Scoring Att||Dribbles Won||Accurate Through Ball||Successful Final Third Passes||Apps||Mins|
Nevertheless, it is Messi who has won the Golden Ball. No one can change that.