New Zealand stand-in skipper Chris Wood and coach Anthony Hudson were in good company when they overlooked Lionel Messi in the world wide vote for football's player of the year.

Messi, the Argentinian and Barcelona superstar, won his fifth Ballon d'Or with over 40 per cent of the vote but Wood was among 30 international captains who left him out of their top three.

Wood, who covers for regular All Whites captain Winston Reid, plumped for Bayern Munich's Robert Lewandowski, Paul Pogba of Juventus and Manchester City's Kevin De Bruyne.

Hudson went for Real Madrid's Cristiano Ronaldo, Alexis Sanchez of Arsenal and Pogba.


The glamour award has turned into an annual battle between Messi and Ronaldo, who don't do each other any favours in the vast and transparent voting system involving international captains, coaches and media.

Messi gave his votes to Barcelona team mates Luis Suarez, Neymar and Andres Iniesta. Ronaldo chose Real Madrid comrades Karim Benzema, James Rodriguez and Gareth Bale.