World Player of the Week: Cristiano Ronaldo - Real Madrid

World Player of the Week
Cristiano Ronaldo
Real Madrid
2 (4)
 Real Madrid
 3-1 Sporting Gijon
   Atletico Madrid
Real Madrid
Cristiano Ronaldo has been in superlative form this season for Real Madrid, and he was on fire for Los Blancos in the past week, scoring four goals in two games to take his tally to a record 41 league strikes in 2011-12.

The Portugal international was decisive in Madrid’s 4-1 victory over rivals Atletico in the derby at the Vicente Calderon, scoring a hat-trick. He powered home a stunning free-kick, added a second with a fierce dipping shot, before completing his treble from the penalty spot.

Ronaldo further improved his imperious goal record on Saturday, helping to defeat Sporting Gijon 3-1 at the Santiago Bernabeu. The 27-year-old headed his side’s crucial second goal, ensuring that Jose Mourinho's side remain on target to lift the Primera Division title.
Congratulations to Ronaldo,'s 152nd World Player of the Week winner!

Honourable Mentions

Cristian Baroni - Fenerbahce

Baroni was the star performer in Turkey this weekend as he helped his side get the better of Trabzonspor. The Brazilian midfielder was at the heart of both the goals that the Turkish giants scored in their 2-0 home victory, scoring a stunner from 30 yards and then providing the assist for Moussa Sow's lovely strike.

Salvador Cabanas - 12 de Octubre

Cabanas made his first professional appearance for more than two years in 12 de Octubre's 2-0 win over Martin Ledesma in the Primera B Metropolitana on Saturday, completing a miraculous recovery after being shot in the head at point-blank range in Mexico City. The 31-year-old was substituted after 40 minutes in what was his first official game since the incident in January 2010.

Siem de Jong - Ajax

De Jong scored his first-ever hat-trick in Ajax’s 5-0 victory over title rivals Heerenveen on Wednesday. The forward then went on to set up the opener in the Amsterdam side’s 3-1 win over De Graafschap on Sunday. Ajax have gone six points clear of AZ and Feyenoord in the table following their latest two triumphs.

Lukasz Piszczek - Borussia Dortmund

Lukasz Piszczek’s performances over the past week for Borussia Dortmund have proven to be vital as they look set to retain their Bundesliga crown. The right-back got the better of Franck Ribery in BVB’s 1-0 victory over Bayern Munich and was then decisive in the Ruhr derby against Schalke at the weekend, scoring the equaliser in their 2-1 victory.

Carlos Tevez - Manchester City

The Argentine netted a hat-trick for Manchester City in their 6-1 away victory over Norwich to maintain their title hopes. Tevez was also on target on Wednesday in his first start for Roberto Mancini’s side since September, as the Citizens cruised to a 4-0 triumph over West Bromwich Albion. Tevez’s return has given City a renewed sense of hope at the business end of the season.

On Sunday we encouraged our readers to nominate their choices for the best player of the week and here are some of your comments:

Juelz Banda in Malawi felt that Tevez should be given the award for his excellent performances for Manchester City in the Premier League in the past seven days.

"Carlos Tevez, definitely him with his brilliant hat-trick against Norwich. I'm sure Mancini is regretting already  dropping the striker. He showed them what they have been missing all this while."

Irtza in Pakistan, though, agreed with our choice of Ronaldo.

"Ronaldo should be awarded as player of the week because of his spectacular derby performance in circumstances where Madrid were under huge pressure. I think he gave probably his best performance of the season so far, and also scored an important goal against Gijon at weekend. On the other hand, Messi also did well in a difficult fixture against Levante but I think Cr7 was ahead of him and anybody else this week."

However, El in Nigeria backed Lionel Messi for the accolade.

"Lionel Messi: scores in midweek and adds a superb brace to drag Barca out of defeat and back in the title race. Honourable mentions to Tevez for hitting a hat-trick that kept Man City in the title race. To Mosorini for living up to the end for his club. To Brandao for helping Marseille; winless in 10 out of the last 11 matches to the Coupe de Ligue. To Ronaldo for scoring an away hat-trick to help in his team's title race."

Aziz in Kuwait voted for Juventus forward Alessandro Del Piero for his winning goal against Lazio last week.

"Either Ronaldo or Alex Del Piero. I'd honestly choose Alex. Came off the bench, got the job done from an excellent free kick, gave Juve the 3 points, and proved how decisive and legendary he is yet again."

Ross Middlemass in Edinburgh went for Hibernian captain James McPake for his performance against Aberdeen at the weekend.

"James McPake! Captained Hibernian to the Scottish Cup final being a colossus at the back, guiding them away from the relegation zone also. Smaller league yes but his contribution should not be over looked. Fantastic performance!"

Each week our worldwide team of editors will put forward a selected candidate, as chosen by International, who deserves recognition for achieving something special that matchday.

You can also help us choose a worthy recipient of the weekly accolade by leaving your nominations and comments here. Your suggestions will be taken into consideration.

It won't necessarily be the best player in the world - at least not usually - but whoever we crown will have accomplished something amazing. It might be for a particularly awesome performance or for something praiseworthy off the pitch - either way, the person in question deserves special attention...