Sao Paulo, Jan 1: Santos and Brazil superstar Neymar have been voted South America’s best player for the second successive year by Uruguayan newspaper El Pais.
The 20-year-old beat Corinthians striker Paolo Guerrero, who scored the winning goal in the World Club Cup final against Chelsea, and compatriot Lucas Moura to the prize, reports Xinhua.
Neymar received 199 votes from sports journalists across Uruguay, giving him the award by some distance. Guerrero came in second with 50 votes.
Recent Paris Saint-Germain acquisition Lucas was third, with Ronaldinho Gaucho fourth and Fluminense’s Fred fifth.
The Santos striker continues to attract interest from the world’s biggest clubs but has insisted that he will stay at his boyhood club until after the World Cup in 2014.
Argentine legend Juan Roman Riquelme also received recognition. The former Barcelona midfielder retired after this year’s Copa Libertadores when Boca Juniors were defeated by Corinthians.
According to reports in the Brazilian press he could be ready to return, however, with Paulista club Palmeiras reportedly ready to offer the player a short-term deal.