Last five Euro player of the tournament
Consisting of 24 teams, the football festival will continue till July 12th and is being held in 12 cities in 12 European countries. While the major teams will be fighting to clinch the ultimate trophy, a number of players will also be fighting for the player of the tournament award.
Since 1996, UEFA has rewarded the player they consider has had the biggest impact in the Tournament. Forwards usually lead the chase for the Golden Boot award, but history tells us that the Euro best player of the tournament accolade is also one for the midfielders.
Here, we have taken a look at the last five previous winners of the player of the tournament:
1. Antoine Griezmann – Euro 2016
Despite France losing the title to Portugal in the final, in the last edition of Euro, the Atletico midfielder then was declared the man of the tournament. He also clinched the Golden Boot scoring six goals in France’s run to the finals.
2. Andres Iniesta – Euro 2012
The Barcelona midfielder delivered the goods at important moments for Spain in this edition and helped Spain clinch their consecutive Euro title. He was the man of the match in the final as well where they thrashed Italy 4-0.
3. Xavi – Euro 2008
Another Spanish midfielder who dominated the tournament, Xavi was as sublime as Iniesta if not better when Spain claimed their first European trophy. He pulled the strings on the pitch throughout the tournament and also scored the opening goal in their 3-0 win over Russia in the semi-final while providing the assist to Fernando Torres in the final.
4. Theodoros Zagorakis – Euro 2004
Greece stunned everyone to win this edition and one of the biggest reasons behind their success was this man. He did not score a single goal in the tournament but was the linchpin of the side pulling every string from the middle of the park.
5. Zinedine Zidane – Euro 2000
Arguably one of the best ever to grace the field, the French midfielder continued his dominance at the International stage helping his nation win their second consecutive major title after World Cup 1998. He scored just two goals in the competition but his impact on the games was unmatched.
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