Sunday, June 29, 2008

UEFA Euro 2008: Soccer Haus' Euro 2008 All-Stars

To put the finishing touches on Euro 2008, here's my tournament all-star team and MVP. I'll go with an aggressive 3-5-2 formation, which should be fine since the defenders are so good.

Goaltender: Iker Casillas, Spain
Defenders: Hamit Altintop, Turkey; Carlos Puyol, Spain; Giovanni Van Bronckhorst, Holland
Midfielders: Andrei Arshavin, Russia; Michael Ballack, Germany; Luka Modric, Croatia; Wesley Sneijder, Holland; Xavi, Spain
Forwards: Semih Senturk, Turkey; David Villa, Spain

It's a testament to Spain's team that I'm having such a hard time picking a tournament MVP. Villa led Euro 2008 in scoring, but three of his four goals came in the first game against Russia and he missed the Final. Iker Casillas posted three clean sheets in the knockout round, yet was rarely tested in Spain's last two games. And while I picked Xavi for my final XI, the Spanish midfield was so complete, that position could have easily gone to Cesc Fabregas or Marcos Senna. Who does that leave? Carlos Puyol. The Barcelona captain always seemed to be in the right place during this tournament, and the dominance of Spain's defense allowed their midfielders and strikers to attack with greater confidence. For what it's worth, Carlos Puyol, you are The Soccer Haus' Euro 2008 MVP.

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