Congratulations Cristiano Ronaldo! FIFA World Player of the Year! He is the first player from the English league to ever claim the prize, after the likes of David Beckham and Frank Lampard have only managed second place in the past.

Ronaldo was presented his award by Pele, with Messi and Torres claiming the other top spots.

“It’s a dream come true for me to get this award and I would like to dedicate this to my family,” said Ronaldo. “But it’s also true that the manager always has an important role to play. It was a great season for me and for my club, and the coach was important for me because I learned a lot for him. His experience over so many years is of paramount importance – it’s a privilege to have such a great club manager. This is the climax of a fantastic era for me. I’m happy and proud about what has been done by my team and what we have won. I am lucky to to be part of the history of a club like Manchester United.”

List of FIFA World Player of the Year winners

2008: Cristiano Ronaldo (POR) Manchester United
2007: Kaka (BRA) AC Milan
2006: Fabio Cannavaro (ITA) Real Madrid
2005: Ronaldinho (BRA) Barcelona
2004: Ronaldinho (BRA) Barcelona
2003: Zinedine Zidane (FRA) Real Madrid
2002: Ronaldo (BRA) Real Madrid
2001: Luis Figo (POR) Real Madrid
2000: Zinedine Zidane (FRA) Juventus
1999: Rivaldo (BRA) Barcelona
1998: Zinedine Zidane (FRA) Juventus
1997: Ronaldo (BRA) Inter Milan
1996: Ronaldo (BRA) Barcelona
1995: George Weah (LBR) AC Milan
1994: Romario (BRA) Barcelona
1993: Roberto Baggio (ITA) Juventus
1992: Marco van Basten (NED) AC Milan
1991: Lothar Matthaus (GER) Bayern Munich