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Is Lionel Messi Already The Best Soccer Player Ever, At The Age Of 25?


ZURICH - The results for Golden Ball 2012 killed any remaining doubt over who is our era's undisputed emperor of the soccer planet.

FC Barcelona's Lionel Messi won his fourth straight trophy for best player of the year, the first to notch that record for a man whose talent seems to know no limits. This was the voting announced Monday night in Zurich.

1° Lionel Messi 42 %

2° Cristiano Ronaldo 24 %

3° Andres Iniesta 11 %

The only remaining question about the Argentinean nicknamed “La Pulga” (“The Flea”) is whether he has surpassed the legends of the past, including the likes of his countryman Diego Maradona, Brazilian icon Pele and more recent stars like Zinedine Zidane.

Though he still has no World Cups with the Argentine national team, Messi has led Barcelona to three Champions League titles and five Spanish top division crowns.

Here's the man putting to shame Barcelona's arch enemy, the Real Madrid:

from GIFSoup

Here are ESPN Spain's top 10 goals:

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How A Xi Jinping Dinner In San Francisco May Have Sealed Mastercard's Arrival In China

The credit giant becomes only the second player after American Express to be allowed to set up a bank card-clearing RMB operation in mainland China.

Photo of a hand holding a phone displaying an Union Pay logo, with a Mastercard VISA logo in the background of the photo.

Mastercard has just been granted a bank card clearing license in China.

Liu Qianshan


It appears that one of the biggest beneficiaries from Chinese President Xi Jinping's visit to San Francisco was Mastercard.

The U.S. credit card giant has since secured eagerly anticipated approval to expand in China's massive financial sector, having finally obtained long sought approval from China's central bank and financial regulatory authorities to initiate a bank card business in China through its joint venture with its new Chinese partner.

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Through a joint venture in China between Mastercard and China's NetsUnion Clearing Corporation, dubbed Mastercard NUCC, it has officially entered mainland China as an RMB currency clearing organization. It's only the second foreign business of its kind to do so following American Express in 2020.

The Wall Street Journal has reported that the development is linked to Chinese President Xi Jinping's meeting on Nov. 15 with U.S. President Joe Biden in San Francisco, part of a two-day visit that also included dinner that Xi had with U.S. business executives.

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