After 3.75 million votes were cast by 277,985 users, the uefa.com users' Team of the Year 2007 has been revealed. Take an in-depth look at the selections.
Goalkeeper: Iker Casillas (Real Madrid CF)
Often nominated but not selected till now, Iker Casillas has been one of Europe's best keepers. Only 26, he has 73 Spain caps and has appeared 84 times for Madrid in the UEFA Champions League. He was in stellar form in 2007, playing a key role as Los Merengues regained the Spanish title. He finished more than 10,000 votes ahead of Petr Čech, with whom he shares a birthday, polling more than 90,000 votes.
Right-back: Daniel Alves (Sevilla FC)
After just missing out on the 2006 team, archetypal attacking full-back Daniel Alves edged out the more defensive-minded Sergio Ramos in this year's lineup. Alves is to the right flank what compatriot Roberto Carlos is to the left. Always looking to attack without shunning defensive duties, Alves was a central figure in Sevilla's second successive UEFA Cup triumph and also scored in Brazil's Copa América final victory.
Central defender: Alessandro Nesta (AC Milan)
After sitting out Italy's 2006 FIFA World Cup win, Alessandro Nesta may have had a point to prove on his return and he did so with an excellent display for Milan in the UEFA Champions League final. He then helped the Rossoneri triumph in the UEFA Super Cup and the FIFA Club World Cup, where he scored a goal in the decider.
Central defender: John Terry (Chelsea FC)
John Terry topped the poll for central defender despite the fact he missed a lot of the year through injury. However, when he was playing, Terry showed enough to confirm his status as one of the best stoppers around. He scored the first international goal at the new Wembley in June and also led Chelsea to FA Cup and English League Cup glory as well as to the semi-finals of the UEFA Champions League for the third time in four seasons.
Left-back: Eric Abidal (Olympique Lyonnais/FC Barcelona)
The France defender pipped last year's winner Philipp Lahm by less than one per cent of the vote. Yet there is no doubt that Abidal is one of the finest full-backs around. He started the year with Lyon and his partnership with Florent Malouda was one of the strongest left sides in the game as he claim a third straight Ligue 1 crown. He has since impressed with Barcelona and is France's undisputed No1 at left-back.
Right midfield: Cristiano Ronaldo (Manchester United FC)
Undoubtedly the finest winger in the world, Ronaldo was in stunning form in 2007. He scored 29 goals for Manchester United in all competitions as they regained their Premier League title and reached the UEFA Champions League semi-finals. In addition, he netted five times as Portugal qualified for UEFA EURO 2008™. He was chosen as Footballer of the Year by both journalists and his fellow professionals in England and was also voted Portuguese Player of the Year.
Central midfield: Steven Gerrard (Liverpool FC)
The Liverpool talisman may have lost out to Milan in the UEFA Champions League final, but Gerrard finished well ahead of second-placed Andrea Pirlo in the voting in this category. He also received more votes as captain than any other player, over 40,000. He led Liverpool to a second final in three years and late in 2007 scored in seven successive matches, including the last three UEFA Champions League fixtures as Liverpool made the last 16.
Attacking midfield: Kaká (AC Milan)
With 220,333 votes, Kaká topped the poll overall after a brilliant year which underlined his status as the best player in the world. Top scorer with ten goals as Milan won the UEFA Champions League, Kaká also lifted the UEFA Super Cup – scoring in the final – and was picked as best player when Milan claimed the Club World Cup.
Left midfield: Clarence Seedorf (AC Milan)
The most successful player in UEFA Champions League history shone again in 2007 with his fourth final victory. He finished more than 6,000 votes ahead of Ricardo Quaresma to be selected for a second time, five years after his previous inclusion. His campaign was highlighted by crucial strikes against FC Bayern München and Manchester United in the quarter and semi-finals en route to another European success, and also by his 100th UEFA Champions League appearance against Celtic FC in December.
Forward: Zlatan Ibrahimović (FC Internazionale Milano)
In the last 12 months, the mercurial Swedish international has added the consistency to the ability and self-confidence he has always possessed. He was leading marksman for Inter as they secured the 2006/07 Scudetto and he continued in that vein in the final months of the year, finishing as joint top scorer in the UEFA Champions League with five goals from six games.
Forward: Didier Drogba (Chelsea FC)
Belated recognition for the Ivory Coast striker after he played such a crucial part in Chelsea's Premier League title triumph of 2006. He top-scored in the English championship in 2006/07 with 21 goals, netted twice in Chelsea's 2-1 League Cup final victory over Arsenal FC, and forced in the winner in the first FA Cup final at the new Wembley in extra time against Manchester United. He also hit four goals in four outings as Chelsea advanced to the last 16 of the 2007/08 UEFA Champions League.
Coach: Sir Alex Ferguson
The Scottish manager who led Manchester United to UEFA Champions League glory in 1999 gets a long overdue award after guiding the Red Devils to the ninth title of his remarkable two-decade reign at Old Trafford. He has built arguably his third great United side and after contesting the semi-finals in 2007, he will be hopeful of another UEFA Champions League triumph in 2008.
Click here to see the results in full.
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