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The Spain playmaker triumphed ahead of two of the game's leading lights, receiving two votes more than the duo in winning the award

Spain midfielder Andres Iniesta has scooped Uefa's award for the best player in Europe over the last season ahead of Barcelona team-mate Lionel Messi and Real Madrid star Cristiano Ronaldo.

The 28-year-old shined as the Blaugrana finished second in La Liga and reached the semi-finals of the Champions League.

He also performed admirably as Spain retained their European Championship crown in Ukraine and Poland in the summer and was subsequently named the best player at the tournament.

And he has now scooped another award, pipping the Argentine and Portuguese forwards, despite their respective 73 and 60-goal campaigns.

"Without my team-mates at the Spanish national team and Barcelona I wouldn't have won this individual trophy," he commented.

His captain at club level, Carles Puyol, was quick to congratulate the Albacete-born schemer on his official Twitter page.

"Congratulations, Andres!! You deserve this."

Iniesta received 19 votes from the panel, while Messi and Ronaldo were both given the nod by 17 voters.

In last year's edition of the award, Messi was named as the best player in Europe, with fellow Barcelona star Xavi and Ronaldo finishing in second and third place respectively.

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