The FIFA Coca Cola ranking is another reminder that the Brazilian Football Confederation (CBF) needs to address management and competition issues that impact on the reputation of the national team.
If Messi sees out his career at Barcelona - joining the likes of Casillas, Scholes, Schweinsteiger, Maldini, Totti, De Rossi, Adams, Gerrard, Le Tissier, Xavi and Iniesta, to name but a few - he will be in exalted company.
The chorus of boos that followed their defeat to Swansea at home this weekend could spell real trouble for the once lordly manager as the veneer of his stature is slowly eroding away by concerted discontent.
Former Chelsea manager Luiz Felipe Scolari will have an old score to settle when his Samba Boys play England in the chilly confines of Wembley on 6 February.
I have no doubt that all of Arsenal's squad can probably balance a football on the ends of their penises and juggle it whilst playing a game of Fifa; they're without question technically gifted players. But they all seem presently to lack it.
Wenger's previous strengths now seem his greatest weaknesses. His incessant preference for youth over experience once appeared inspired; it now seems naïve. His financial prudishness used to be a mark of the man; now his refusal to 'splash the cash' appears misguided and woefully childish.
David Beckham has announced that the upcoming MLS final on December 1 will be his last game for LA Galaxy, as he seeks one last challenge. With a career that has seen him enjoy spells at Manchester United, Real Madrid, Milan and - er - Preston North End, where will be next for the former England captain?
The fact that chairmen so consistently lose faith so soon into the season is baffling enough and shows the extent to which they are obsessed with the financial rewards of promotion and the fear of relegation.
I've never seen a club chairman cry over football, I've never seen a manager do it either. Sure, the odd player has shed tears but I've seen millions of fans with tears streaming down their faces because of their love for their football club and that's why we need governance to protect football from itself.
Footballers, step up for sloppy defending; for this is exactly what the paying public wants.
London may well be a franchise too far.
If the London 2012 Olympic Games have taught us anything it is that football doesn't quite matter anymore.
You know that feeling when you've gone for a really good meal, but leave still feeling a bit hungry? That's the overwhelming feeling I've got from watching Arsenal so far this season. Don't get me wrong, it's not been a bad start...not exactly awe-inspiring, but still decent enough and with shinning beacons of promise (and don't we just love the words 'promise' and 'potential' at Arsenal!)
In the nearly five months since his new contract, Mancini seems to have been trying very hard to destroy his own credibility, and City's chances of building on last season's triumph. A series of baffling transfer and team selection decisions have contributed to City's stuttering start to the Premier League, and now - after a 1-1 draw against Borussia Dortmund - being in danger of exiting the Champions League at the group stage for the second successive year.
It seems that while the majority of Tottenham's fan base have spent the best part of the start of the season pointing fingers at one another, passing around 'the blame' quicker than Danielle Lloyd through the Spurs dressing room, the real issues have been cast to one side, ignored.
Not something learned, per se, but extra weight was added to the argument for scrapping the pre-match handshake after Anton Ferdinand refused to shake the hands of John Terry and Ashley Cole.