Andrés Iniesta was named as the Best Player of the Tournament with UEFA technical director Andy Roxburgh saying the Spain midfielder "symbolized" UEFA EURO 2012. He becomes the second Barça player to win this award after Xavi was named Best Player of Euro 2008.
Andrés Iniesta has been named as the UEFA EURO 2012 Best Player of the Tournament by the UEFA Technical Team. The Barça midfielder was one of the stand-out performers in Sunday's 4-0 final victory against Italy. Iniesta's record in six games at the finals was one assist and no goals, but that says little about the 28-year-old’s overall contribution to Vicente del Bosque's side.
"Xabi Alonso, Xavi Hernández and Iniesta were all superb. In the case of Xavi, he won the award last time, and he could easily have won the award again, but we felt that Iniesta deserved it. In many ways, he symbolized the tournament – the creative, incisive runner, with and without the ball. We felt that he epitomized a lot of what we saw," said UEFA technical director Andy Roxburgh.
According to UEFA’s website, the UEFA Technical Team comprised of UEFA technical director Andy Roxburgh , Fabio Capello (Italy), Jerzy Engel (Poland), Dušan Fitzel (Czech Republic), Gérard Houllier (France), Lars Lagerbäck (Sweden), György Mezey (Hungary) and Holger Osieck (Australia coach). Jean-Paul Brigger and Walter Gagg provided FIFA input, with Mordechai Shpigler acting as link-man to UEFA's Development and Technical Assistance Committee.
Iniesta has always said that individual accolades are far less important to him that what the team achieves as a whole. “I play for joy. If people then make evaluations of what I do, then I’m delighted” said the player who has won many titles such as five Spanish Leagues, three Champions Leagues, two Copas del Rey, two Clubs World Cups, two European Championships and one World Cup.
Víctor Valdés, Iniesta’s teammate and one of his closest friends on the team said, “What can I say about Andrés? This makes him greater than ever, if that’s possible. He deserves it, because of the way he played throughout the tournament and the way it ended.” Cesc Fábregas also stated, “Iniesta is massive. Barça’s latest signing, Jordi Alba also said, “He and Xavi are two of the best players in the world. And they help you to fit in.” Even former Real Madrid great Zidane echoed those sentiments when he said, “Iniesta has an enormous influence on the way his team plays. Spain are good, but he’s on another level”.
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