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Paul Breitner: My team of 2011

Published: Monday 19 December 2011, 11.56CET
Ex-German international Paul Breitner selects his Team of the Year, including the player who has everything, another whose kind is seen only every three or four decades, and a "robot" on the left.

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Published: Monday 19 December 2011, 11.56CET

Paul Breitner: My team of 2011

Ex-German international Paul Breitner selects his Team of the Year, including the player who has everything, another whose kind is seen only every three or four decades, and a "robot" on the left.

FC Barcelona dominate Paul Breitner's Team of the Year, with five reigning European champions making the cut. The ex-German international, the 2012 UEFA Champions League final ambassador, also includes players from former sides Real Madrid CF and FC Bayern München. View his choices below; make your own selection before 12.00CET on Friday 6 January.

Vote for your Team of the Year 2011

Goalkeeper: Manuel Neuer (FC Schalke 04/FC Bayern München)
One of the best three goalkeepers we have, Neuer gets my vote because he is the youngest of them. He has the brightest of futures ahead of him.

Right-back: Daniel Alves (FC Barcelona)
My favourite player on the right for years. He is more a midfielder or even an attacker, really great offensively, but he also knows perfectly well how to play in defence.

Central defender: Gerard Piqué (FC Barcelona)
A perfect central defender. We demand a central defender is 100% secure in one-on-ones, but Piqué can also start an attacking move. He fits perfectly into Barcelona's technically brilliant style.

Central defender: Nemanja Vidić (Manchester United FC)
A decisive player, he is the reason Manchester United have achieved so much in the past couple of years. He is the one who holds the whole defence together; he has developed fantastically at Old Trafford.

Left-back: Fábio Coentrão (Real Madrid CF)
I have followed Fábio Coentrão intensively for the last two years, and have seen how he has developed. He is normally a left-sided midfielder, but he is excellent at left-back, and will have a great career in that position at Real Madrid.

Right midfield: Arjen Robben (FC Bayern München)
When he is fit then he is by far the best on the right. He is invaluable, simply priceless as an individual player.

Central midfield: Xavi Hernández (FC Barcelona)
Xavi and Iniesta are the best two central midfielders, and a perfect fit for one another, together with Lionel Messi. Xavi is the director and organiser, the sort of player you only get every 30 or 40 years.

Attacking midfield: Andrés Iniesta (FC Barcelona)
Iniesta was in the shadow of Xavi for a long time; and Lionel Messi as well. But step by step, over the last few years, he has built up a reputation that is up there with Xavi and Messi.

Left midfield: Gareth Bale (Tottenham Hotspur FC)
A fantastic 'robot' on the left. He's incredibly quick, and he makes full use of this speed. And for a British player, I have to say, he has wonderful skills that he can use to get past opponents, to deliver perfect crosses. He is also very dangerous in front of goal.

Forward: Lionel Messi (FC Barcelona)
Simply the player who has everything.

Forward: Robin Van Persie (Arsenal FC)
Without Robin van Persie we wouldn't [be] talking about Arsenal now. And what he has done in the last few weeks is incredible.

Coach: Josep Guardiola (FC Barcelona)
What can you say? Often coaches can't or don't decide titles, because the team is simply too good and the coach has to adapt to the quality of the team. But Pep Guardiola has formed this Barcelona team, he has developed it and developed it since taking over from Frank Rijkaard. Pep has perfected them and set a new benchmark over the last three or four years − and for the next three or four years − for how football should be played.

Last updated: 06/12/13 4.23CET

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