The group stage of the UEFA Regions' Cup produced plenty of drama, and as six teams head home today in advance of Saturday's final, we select six players who provided a superb measure of the quality of talent thriving at amateur level in Europe.
Prince Yarboye (Veneto)
Quiet, composed and versatile, Prince Yarboye was one of the hosts' best-kept secrets. The naturally left-footed defender was at home at the heart of the back four and wide on the left, and was equally strong in the tackle and creative in his side's build-up play. He rarely put a foot wrong as Veneto reached the final.
Teodor Stefanov (Yugoiztochen Region)
The lungs and brains of the Bulgarian team, Stefanov was particularly convincing in the 2-2 draw with Selección Catalana – a result which kept their hopes alive. He took the bull by its horns with his side a goal down and under pressure, his infectious willingness and industry inspiring his team-mates.
Sergei Lynko (Isloch)
A creative striker and a target man rolled into one, the car parts salesman was a fearsome dribbler with a fine shot, with opponents finding that often the only way to stop him was to foul him. His defining moment came as he capped a 50-metre sprint with a neat finish against Yugoiztochen Region to earn his squad bronze medals.
Jonathan Montgomery (Eastern Region)
Northern Irish football tends to hinge more around power and pace, but Harry McConkey designed his side to focus on skill and getting the ball down on the ground. Midfielder Montgomery was their schemer-in-chief, the small but stylish recruitment consultant epitomising the adage that size is not everything.
Róbert Makó (Keleti Régió)
The intimidating 35-year-old conceded three goals and played for just 109 minutes – he succumbed to a serious injury in his final game – but made a big impression. Never afraid to leave his line and dominate his area, he showcased his shot-stopping prowess with a save from Eastern Region midfielder Ryan Moffatt's 20-metre volley.
Oscar Muñoz (Selección Catalana)
Selección Catalana's attractive attacking style focuses on feeding Muñoz, and he obliged with finishing touches in their first two Group B games. His eye for goal and quick thinking ensured he was often a step ahead of opposition defenders, for whom he proved a true handful.
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