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Spain midfielder Andrés Iniesta has been named as the UEFA EURO 2012 Best Player of the Tournament by the UEFA Technical Team.
The FC Barcelona man was once again one of the stand-out performers in Sunday's 4-0 final victory against Italy, whose Andrea Pirlo was also considered as one of the stars of the finals in Poland and Ukraine. 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.
"Pirlo was magnificent and obviously circumstances didn't help him in the final," said UEFA technical director Andy Roxburgh. "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 symbolised the tournament – the creative, incisive runner, with and without the ball. We felt that he epitomised a lot of what we saw."
Along with Roxburgh, the UEFA Technical Team comprised 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.
At least two of the team were present at all 31 UEFA EURO 2012 matches. The team's 72-page technical report, published in English, French and German versions, will be officially launched at the 9th UEFA Conference for European National Coaches in Warsaw in late September.
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