LONDON — Lionel Messi returned to the top of The Associated Press Global Football 10 on Tuesday after scoring a hat trick in Barcelona's 5-0 win over Levante.
Messi's 31st career treble came in his 300th Spanish league match. He is already the all-time record scorer in the division and his three goals on Sunday took his tally to 269.
"Lionel Messi's goals meant he went level on 23 La Liga hat tricks with Cristiano Ronaldo, and so his duel with the Real Madrid star continues," Mike McGrath of The Sun in England said. "This week it is the Barcelona superstar who is top of the charts."
"Scoring four of Wolfsburg's five goals was a remarkable contribution from Bas Dost in an equally as remarkable game of football," Marco Monteverde of News Corp. Australia said.
Arjen Robben was third after propelling Bayern Munich, the Bundesliga leader, to an emphatic 8-0 victory over Hamburg with two goals. The victory that kept Pep Guardiola's side eight points ahead of Wolfsburg atop the Bundesliga. It also put Bayern top of the Global Football 10 team vote, ahead of Barcelona.
"Bayern made a case for itself with an 8-0 win, which re-established it atop the Bundesliga, though you have to give Wolfsburg credit for the most interesting results of the year after its 5-4 win over Bayer Leverkusen," Tom Timmermann of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch said.
Barcelona's emphatic victory — its 11th straight — impressed other panel members but the majority felt Bayern deserved its place atop the rankings.
"Luis Suarez scored the most spectacular goal of the weekend in Europe, but what Bayern did to Hamburg was incredible," Manos Staramopoulos of Dimocratia in Greece said. "Spectacularly high standards with the amazing orchestrator, Arjen Robben."
Wolfsburg is third while Celta Vigo enters this week's poll in fourth after a surprising 2-0 victory over Spanish league holder Atletico Madrid.
Inter Milan is fifth and Real Madrid sixth, while third-tier English side Bradford re-enters the poll in sixth after continuing its FA Cup exploits by knocking out Premier League side Sunderland in the fifth round of the tournament with a 2-0 win.
It had previously beaten Chelsea 4-2 at Stamford Bridge in the fourth round.
Arsenal is eighth, with second-tier club Blackburn ninth for beating Premier League side Stoke 4-1 in the cup.
Borussia Dortmund is 10th after winning 4-2 against Mainz and moving out of the relegation zone in the German league.
In the player's poll, Fredy Guarin is fourth after he inspired Inter Milan to a 4-1 victory away to Atalanta with two goals and is a place above Suarez, who came off the substitute's bench to score Barcelona's fifth goal with a superb acrobatic strike.
AP Global Football 10:
1. Lionel Messi, 98 points.
2. Bas Dost, 90.
3. Arjen Robben, 78.
4. Fredy Guarin, 60.
5. Luis Suarez, 55.
6. Olivier Giroud, 50.
7. Thomas Mueller, 42.
8. Mario Goetze, 38.
9. Isco, 31.
10. Marco Reus, 20.
1. Bayern Munich, 126.
2. Barcelona, 100.
3. Wolfsburg, 94.
4. Celta Vigo, 67.
5. Inter Milan, 60.
6. Real Madrid, 49.
7. Bradford, 47.
8. Arsenal, 44.
9. Blackburn, 22.
10. Borussia Dortmund, 21.
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