The nominations are:
Fabio Cannavaro (Italy) - Captain of Italy, he have been consistantly brilliant in this competition. One of the reasons why Italy only conceded one goal so far might be down this little man over here. Not the tallest of defenders, but I don't think any strikers would like to face him, even if you're Petey Crouchinho.
Maniche (Portugal) - Erm, other than shooting from afar like Lampard (except he scored twice), I don't have any idea why they picked him. Perhaps at getting yellow cards?
Michael Ballack (Germany) - Oh now we know. They picked the list based on your reputation. What have Ballack done to warrant a place here anyway. I could name a few others who deserved it more than him. But since he's the captain of a over-achieving Germany, then might as well put his name here.
Andrea Pirlo (Italy) - Excellent player with great technique. I have always thought he's a player who doesn't have any body strength and goes down too easily. But this time round he showed me that he doesn't need to be as strong as Gattuso to be able to play well. A graceful player which resembles Xabi Alonso to me. His passing and set piece aren't too shabby either.
Gianluca Zambrotta (Italy) - Scored a wicked left footed drive and have been consistantly performing for the Azzurris. His bombing run up and down the right flank is essential for the Italian side, who lacked a little width in attack. Solid defensively as well.
Thierry Henry (France) - Another player on the list for being a big name player. Scored 3 goals so far against mighty Togo, South Korea and also world champions, Brazil. Yesterday he made a meal out of the contact from Ricardo Carvalho and the penalty turns out to be the winning penalty. Where's your sportsmanship, Monsieur Henry?
Gianluigi Buffon (Italy) - The world's most expensive goalkeeper and you could see why. Part of the impregnable Italian defence, he made a couple of crucial saves and commanded his defence well. Big size and imposing, he is the keeper that no strikers would like to face, one on one.
Patrick Vieira (France) - Had a quiet first two games, where he was found missing on several instances. But when Zidane was suspended against Togo, he wore the captain's armband and put in one of the performance of the tournament from a single player. He was the architech for Henry's goal and had his name on the score sheet as well. Gets better every game, should be interesting fight with Rino Gattuso in the World Cup Finals.
Miroslav Klose (Germany) - Current top scorer of the World Cup 2006, his goal poaching ability is undoubtedly one of the best in the tournament and absolutely clinical at times. His partnership with Lukas Podolski blossomed and they formed the partnership many teams admired. Scored the 80min equaliser against Argentina and a couple of goals in the opening match. Should be able to win the golden boot without much problem.
Zinedine Zidane (France) - The master of how to play football gracefully. Do I need to say more about Zizou? Although he was pretty poor against Switzerland and South Korea, he came back strongly and showed the Samba Brazillians how football should be played with effectiveness and little hassle. A composed penalty taking skill from him also ensured the French a place in finals for only their second time in history.
Who's your pick of the bunch? Who shouldn't be on that list? Mail me your views or comment on it by whatever means. Oh, remember to meditate and sleep early before the 3rd/4th placing match starts this Saturday. Time to get some rest!
Friday, July 07, 2006
The nominations are: