Van Persie tops AP player poll, Barcelona top team
LONDON (AP) — Robin van Persie held off last year's winner Lionel Messi to earn player of the week honors in the first round of The Associated Press global soccer poll.
Both players scored twice, but Van Persie's acrobatic volley and long-range goal in Manchester United's 4-1 win over Swansea in the Premier League gave the Dutchman the edge over Messi by five points.
Monaco forward Emmanuel Riviere, who scored his first career hat trick in the 4-1 win over Montpellier in the French league, finished third.
Barcelona midfielder Cesc Fabregas took fourth place after being instrumental in Barcelona's 7-0 thrashing of Levante in the Spanish league.
Barcelona won 221 of 230 points to finish in front of United, Chelsea, Juventus and Monaco in the team poll.