As the curtains come down on another one month of a show piece football event; we have been wowed by the performances of some players, whilst we may have had those that failed to live up to the billing or the hype; these eleven plus manager are our standout performers from Euro 2016. As always i expect to have different views with respect to this selection; but you must admit; Portugal’s victory, the heroics of Wales, the fairy tale of Iceland and the capitulation of France at the final hurdle tilted my choices a little bit.
The Selection will assemble in a 4-3-3 formation as follows:
Rui Patricio (Goal Keeper- Portugal)
The last line of defense in a dogged Portuguese defensive line and set up; very integral to Portugal’s European conquest.
Joshua Kimmich (Right Back- Germany)
Steady, Solid and never afraid to venture forward; one of the best youngsters to grace the tournament; in him, Jonas Hector and Jonathan Tah; Germany have a defensive structure that can serve them for many years to come.
Raphael Guerreiro (Left Back-Portugal)
He has been a joy to watch all through the tournament; it is quite clear why Dortmund decided to spend 12 Million Euros on him quickly before the bigger European sharks come calling on the strength of his Euros performance.
Leonardo Bonucci (Center Back – Italy)
A keen eye for a pass, solid and dependable on the ball, very efficient in tackles and interceptions; Juventus have a huge job on their hands trying to keep him.
Pepe (Center Back – Portugal)
Forget his irritating antics; he is a damn good defender; little surprise he was named man of the match in Portugal’s finals victory against the French.
Joao Mario (Central Midfielder – Portugal)
Solid, all round midfielder with a very good engine; a true midfield workaholic. A strong component of the Portuguese midfield along with Adrien Silva that provided the foundations on which Portugal’s success is built.
Toni Kroos (Central Midfielder – Germany)
Probably Germany’s best player at this Euros, will be remain an integral part of the German Machine’s future.
Aaron Ramsey (Central Midfielder – Wales)
I do know I would get plenty of stick for his inclusion, but you can’t take anything away from his influence on that resilient Welsh side. Little wonder what may have been if he took part in the Semi Final clash against Portugal; also special recognition for Joe Allen, for his performances in the Welsh Midfield.
Gareth Bale (Right Wing Forward – Wales)
The only true world class player in the Wales team, he led by example and played his part in a remarkable adventure for the Welsh.
Cristano Ronaldo (Left Wing Forward – Portugal)
Legendary status confirmed, another Ballon D’Or confirmed; the debate on him and Messi takes another twist with Portugal’s success at the Euros. Can he be mentioned among the greats now?
Antoine Griezmann (Center Forward -France)
Two big finals disappointments in one season, I doubt the Golden Boot can console him in anyway. He has had a great season with Atletico Madrid and had a great tournament with France.
Fernando Santos (Manager – Portugal)
Tactically astute and meticulous; his attention to detail and the changes made game in, game out as the tournament progressed; ensured Portugal got better as the tournament continued.
*** Special Mention for Gigi Buffon, Granit Xhaka, Ivan Perisic, N’kolo Kante, Ragnar Sigurdsson, Marek Hamsik, Laurent Koscielny, Andreas Iniesta, Kevin De Bruyne, Radja Nainggolan, Olivier Giroud, Alvaro Morata and Antonio Conte
** Selection material Courtesy Line Up 11 App