Friday, 5 October 2007

Kaka wins FIFPro accolade

AC Milan star Kaka has been named FIFPro world player of the year.

The 25-year-old Brazilian claimed the accolade after 45,000 members of the players' union voted in the awards, which are in their third year, succeeding Ronaldinho.

He said: "I am humbled to receive such an honour. To follow my good friend and such a great player as Ronaldinho makes this a very special award.

"To be recognised by my fellow professional players worldwide coming from over 50,000 players is amazing. I would like to thank my teammates and coaches and everyone involved at Milan and the national team, as well as my family and friends for their support.

"My aim is to keep on listening and learning from others and to keep improving as a player and as a person, it is a privilege to be a professional footballer and it is our duty to work hard to be the best we can be for our team mates, supporters, club and country and to earn the respect of fellow men."

Kaka was instrumental in Milan's Champions League triumph, sealed with a victory over Liverpool in Athens in May, ending as top scorer with 10 goals including three in the semi-final win over Manchester United.

Other Italian representatives in the FIFPro World XI were Juventus goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon, Milan’s Alessandro Nesta and Italy captain Fabio Cannavaro.

FIFPro World XI:
Goalkeeper: Gianluigi Buffon (Italy/Juventus).
Defenders: Alessandro Nesta (Italy/AC Milan), Fabio Cannavaro (Italy/Real Madrid), John Terry (England/Chelsea) and Carles Puyol (Spain/Barcelona).
Midfielders: Steven Gerrard (England/Liverpool), Cristiano Ronaldo (England/Manchester United) and Ricardo Kak√° (Brazil/AC Milan).
Forwards: Lionel Messi (Argentina/Barcelona), Didier Drogba (Ivory Coast/Chelsea), and Ronaldhino (Brazil/Barcelona).

Source: C4 Football Italia / FIFPro

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