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Pauleta honoured by fellow players

FC Girondins de Bordeaux striker Pauleta has been voted the French first division's best player.

FC Girondins de Bordeaux striker Pedro Pauleta has been voted the best player in the French first division for 2001/02.

Top scorer
The Portugal international, currently the division's top scorer with 21 goals, was awarded the 'Oscar of football' by fellow players and coaches on Sunday, as he celebrated his 29th birthday.

Close behind Pauleta in the voting were Paris Saint-Germain FC's Mikel Arteta, RC Lens' Stéphane Pédron and FC Lorient's Jean-Claude Darcheville.

World Cup
Pauleta joined Bordeaux from Spanish club RC Deportivo La Coruña in September 2000, and is tipped to make a strong impact at the 2002 FIFA World Cup, where Portugal face Poland, Korean Republic and the United States in the first round.

Final goals
He scored twice in the recent French League Cup final, helping Bordeaux beat Lorient 3-0.

Recent winners
Other recent winners of the Oscar include Eric Carrière, Marcelo Gallardo, Ali Benarbia and Zinedine Zidane.

Most promising player
AJ Auxerre forward Djibril Cissé was handed the most promising player award, having scored 20 goals this season and put himself in contention for a place in the French World Cup squad.

Manager of the season
Lens coach Joel Muller was voted manager of the season for leading his side to the top of the first division in his first year with the club have previously been in charge of FC Metz.

Championship decider
His Lens side meet Olympique Lyonnais in the championship decider on Saturday.