uefa.com users have been voting in huge numbers for the uefa.com users' Team of 2001. Voting continues until 30 December and the focus now shifts to the star strikers. Such is the surfeit of attacking talent playing in Europe that there are twelve players to choose from. Read the profiles, view the video and have your say. The Team of 2001 as chosen by the users of uefa-com will be revealed on 3 January 2002.
David Trezeguet (Juventus FC and France)
After what was, by his own high standards, a slow start to his Juventus FC career, France striker Trezeguet has never looked back. It was only in the last five games of the 2000/01 season in Serie A that he began to show his quality, scoring seven goals as the Turin club pushed eventual title winners AS Roma to the last. This season has been a continuation of that remarkable burst of form. Nine goals in 15 Serie A games is impressive enough, but his extraordinary burst of pace has helped him become the UEFA Champions League’s top scorer so far with eight goals in seven games. That he can score with such ease against the best clubs in Europe is a mark of Trezeguet’s quality.
Giovane Elber (FC Bayern München and Brazil))
Efficiency is a quality much admired in German football, and Giovane Elber has shown the kind of consistency in front of goal that has made the Brazilian a darling of the FC Bayern München support. Elber’s main qualities are his instincts as a finisher, his quick feet and his decisive passing. As much a goal provider as a goal scorer, he nonetheless has an unsettling ability to be in the right place at the right time to finish Bayern moves decisively. His poaching talents have earned him eight goals in the 1. Bundesliga so far this season, and a further six from his four appearances in the first stage of the UEFA Champions League. He is yet to score in the second stage, but with Elber, barren spells in front of goal rarely last for long.
Andriy Shevchenko (Milan AC and Ukraine)
At FC Dynamo Kyiv, Andriy Shevchenko formed a truly devastating partnership with Serhiy Rebrov, and it was no surprise when Milan AC paid €26m in July 1999 for his services. His career at Milan since has proved that it was money well spent, as Shevchenko remains a player of undeniable quality and supreme instinct. A strong runner and a peerless finisher, Shevchenko has scored three goals in Milan’s four UEFA Cup games this season, and a further eleven in Serie A including an extraordinary individual effort against Juventus FC. "Shevchenko's goal was one of the most beautiful I have seen in the past 15 years," said Milan managing director Adriano Galliani.
Gabriel Batistuta (AS Roma and Argentina)
By his incredibly high standards, the 2001/02 season has been a little underwhelming for Argentinian striker Gabriel Batistuta. With AS Roma coach Fabio Capello accentuating the club’s defensive qualities as they aim to defend the Serie A title, the striker has been short on goals and has struggled with injuries. Just three strikes in Serie A and none in the Champions League have been the hallmark of a difficult spell for the prodigiously gifted striker. It is for his performances in Roma’s title triumph of 2000/01 that Batistuta earned his nomination, however. He was a sensation. Aggressive, competitive and charismatic, at his best the Argentinian is one of the most versatile, all-purpose goal scorers in modern football.
Vladimir Beschastnykh (FC Spartak Moscow and Russia)
A natural predator, it has taken a return to Russian football with FC Spartak Moscow for Vladimir Beschastnykh to rediscover the remarkable goalscoring form that marked him out as a footballing prodigy when he first left the club for SV Werder Bremen and subsequently Racing Santander. Under the leadership of legendary coach Oleg Romantsev, Beschastnykh has been allowed to show his awesome finishing skills again since he rejoined the club in the summer of 2001. Ten goals in the remainder of the Vysshaya league season for Spartak were only the beginning, as he went on to score a further four in six UEFA Champions League appearances. With quick feet and an extraordinary knack for timing his runs perfectly, he is an unfussy performer but a frighteningly effective goalscorer.
Mário Jardel (Sporting Clube de Portugal)
Sporting Clube de Portugal striker Mario Jardel was in no doubt of his own abilities when he recently spoke to uefa.com. "If I score more than the others it is because I have certain characteristics which nobody else has,” he said. “In the box, I am the best in the world." In a player with less natural talent, that would sound like arrogance, but the Brazilian has proved again and again that he is one of the most consummate finishers in world football. With an incredible 16 goals in Sporting’s 14 league games so far, Jardel is capable of scoring in any game and at any level. A further six goals in his six UEFA Cup games for Sporting were not enough to guide the Portuguese club into the last 16.
Many thanks for participating in the voting to find the uefa.com users' team of 2001. Voting has now closed, with the complete results to be announced on 2 January 2002.
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