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Ronaldo, Bayern Munich top final AP soccer poll

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LONDON (AP) — Cristiano Ronaldo and Bayern Munich won player and team honors Tuesday in the final AP soccer polls by The Associated Press.

Ronaldo enjoyed a prolific year in Spain and the Champions League. Votes were cast throughout the season and before Ronaldo helped Madrid win the Champions League, scoring a record 17th goal in the competition. He scored 31 in the Spanish league.

Bayern, despite failing to successfully defend its Champions League title, set a German league record of 53 games unbeaten in 2013-14. It became champions with seven games to spare and also won three other trophies in coach Pep Guardiola’s first season.

The winners received the most votes in the weekly polls by an international soccer panel. Lionel Messi, last year’s winner in the player vote, was second in this poll. Spanish champion Atletico Madrid was the team runner-up. Messi scored 28 league goals in 31 games. His Barcelona club was fourth.

Voter Tom Timmermann of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch suspects Bayern’s Champions League campaign fell apart because of its overwhelming domestic success.

“They are, very likely, the best team in Europe,” Timmermann said. “But once they clinched the Bundesliga title, everything seemed to go on hold.”

Zlatan Ibrahimovic was third in the player vote. He had 30 league goals to lead Paris Saint-Germain to a second consecutive league title. PSG’s 89 points set a French league record. The club was ninth in the team vote.

Liverpool’s Luis Suarez was fourth among the players while his team finished eighth in the poll after its second-place finish in the Premier league.

Juventus was third after it setting an Italian league points record of 102 on its way to winning Serie A.

Gareth Bale, who enjoyed an impressive first season with Real Madrid where he scored 22 times after his record transfer from Tottenham, was not the highest-ranked Welsh player in the top 10.

That distinction fell to Bale’s international teammate Aaron Ramsey at Arsenal. He polled seventh, two places higher than Bale. Ramsey scored the winner in Arsenal’s 3-2 victory over Hull in the FA Cup final.

Diego Costa, who aided Atletico Madrid’s run to its first La Liga title since 1996 with 27 league goals, was fifth. Below him was Borussia Dortmund’s Robert Lewandowski, who will move to Bayern this summer. Teammate Marco Reus was No. 10.

Premier League champion Manchester City was fifth, with striker Sergio Aguero eighth in the player vote. Chelsea was the 10th-rated club after reaching the Champions League semifinals and finishing third in the Premier League.

Teams:

1. Bayern Munich, 2,697 points.

2. Atletico Madrid, 2,227.

3. Juventus, 2,053.

4. Barcelona, 2,019.

5. Real Madrid, 1,684.

6. Manchester City, 1,609.

7. Arsenal, 1,492.

8. Liverpool, 1,332.

9. Paris Saint-Germain, 1,327.

10. Chelsea, 1,268.

Players:

1. Cristiano Ronaldo, 1,449.

2. Lionel Messi, 1,349.

3. Zlatan Ibrahimovic, 1,176.

4. Luis Suarez, 1,146.

5. Diego Costa, 1,005.

6. Robert Lewandowski, 635.

7. Aaron Ramsey, 617.

8. Sergio Aguero, 582.

9. Gareth Bale, 548.

10. Marco Reus, 527.

Ronaldo, Bayern Munich top final AP soccer poll

KDWN

LONDON (AP) — Cristiano Ronaldo and Bayern Munich won player and team honors Tuesday in the final AP soccer polls by The Associated Press.

Ronaldo enjoyed a prolific year in Spain and the Champions League. Votes were cast throughout the season and before Ronaldo helped Madrid win the Champions League, scoring a record 17th goal in the competition. He scored 31 in the Spanish league.

Bayern, despite failing to successfully defend its Champions League title, set a German league record of 53 games unbeaten in 2013-14. It became champions with seven games to spare and also won three other trophies in coach Pep Guardiola’s first season.

The winners received the most votes in the weekly polls by an international soccer panel. Lionel Messi, last year’s winner in the player vote, was second in this poll. Spanish champion Atletico Madrid was the team runner-up. Messi scored 28 league goals in 31 games. His Barcelona club was fourth.

Voter Tom Timmermann of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch suspects Bayern’s Champions League campaign fell apart because of its overwhelming domestic success.

“They are, very likely, the best team in Europe,” Timmermann said. “But once they clinched the Bundesliga title, everything seemed to go on hold.”

Zlatan Ibrahimovic was third in the player vote. He had 30 league goals to lead Paris Saint-Germain to a second consecutive league title. PSG’s 89 points set a French league record. The club was ninth in the team vote.

Liverpool’s Luis Suarez was fourth among the players while his team finished eighth in the poll after its second-place finish in the Premier league.

Juventus was third after it setting an Italian league points record of 102 on its way to winning Serie A.

Gareth Bale, who enjoyed an impressive first season with Real Madrid where he scored 22 times after his record transfer from Tottenham, was not the highest-ranked Welsh player in the top 10.

That distinction fell to Bale’s international teammate Aaron Ramsey at Arsenal. He polled seventh, two places higher than Bale. Ramsey scored the winner in Arsenal’s 3-2 victory over Hull in the FA Cup final.

Diego Costa, who aided Atletico Madrid’s run to its first La Liga title since 1996 with 27 league goals, was fifth. Below him was Borussia Dortmund’s Robert Lewandowski, who will move to Bayern this summer. Teammate Marco Reus was No. 10.

Premier League champion Manchester City was fifth, with striker Sergio Aguero eighth in the player vote. Chelsea was the 10th-rated club after reaching the Champions League semifinals and finishing third in the Premier League.

Teams:

1. Bayern Munich, 2,697 points.

2. Atletico Madrid, 2,227.

3. Juventus, 2,053.

4. Barcelona, 2,019.

5. Real Madrid, 1,684.

6. Manchester City, 1,609.

7. Arsenal, 1,492.

8. Liverpool, 1,332.

9. Paris Saint-Germain, 1,327.

10. Chelsea, 1,268.

Players:

1. Cristiano Ronaldo, 1,449.

2. Lionel Messi, 1,349.

3. Zlatan Ibrahimovic, 1,176.

4. Luis Suarez, 1,146.

5. Diego Costa, 1,005.

6. Robert Lewandowski, 635.

7. Aaron Ramsey, 617.

8. Sergio Aguero, 582.

9. Gareth Bale, 548.

10. Marco Reus, 527.