AC Milan playmaker Kaka has been named European Player of the Year for 2007, with Cristiano Ronaldo of Manchester United in second place.

The Brazilian, 25, was the Champions League’s top scorer last season with 10 goals as he led his team to the title, beating Liverpool in Athens in the final.

He wins the Golden Ball after amassing 444 points in France Football’s survey of 96 journalists from around the world.

Each was asked to vote on a shortlist of 50 players and Ronaldo came a distant second with 277 points.

United winger Ronaldo, 22, was also in sensational form last term, scoring 25 goals in all for the Barclays Premier League club and Portugal.

Barcelona’s 20-year-old Argentina forward Lionel Messi came third in the vote after emerging as a world-class talent for club and country.

The same trio – Kaka, Ronaldo and Messi – have also been shortlisted for FIFA’s world player of the year award which will be announced in Zurich on December 17.

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