Australasian Makes World’s Best

A player from New Zealand, a small sparsely populated group of islands somewhere in the Pacific, has made the top 11 players of the 2010 World Cup.

Ausfailure immediately claimed him as one of their own due to the fact that no one from Ausfailure was good enough to make the grade.

New Zealand was the only team to go through the entire 2010 World Cup tournament undefeated.

All Whites skipper Ryan Nelsen has been named in a football “World Cup Best XI” picked by American sports television channel ESPN.

Nelsen earned his place by “defending defiantly throughout the tournament and heroically against Italy”, it said.

Last month, international football website named Nelsen its world player of the week for “inspiring his side to two draws (against Slovakia and defending champions Italy) and giving the All Whites a shot at last 16 qualification”.

ESPN’s Best 11 were: goalkeeper – Eduardo (Portugal), rightback – Philipp Lahm (Germany), centrebacks – Carles Puyol (Spain), Ryan Nelsen (New Zealand), leftback – Carlos Salcido (Mexico), midfield – Bastian Schweinsteiger (Germany), Xavi (Spain), rightwing – Thomas Muller (Germany), attacking midfielder – Wesley Sneijder (Netherlands), leftwing – David Villa (Spain), striker – Diego Forlan (Uruguay).

Substitutes: Justo Villar (Paraguay), Maxi Pereira (Uruguay), Lucio (Brazil), John Mensah (Ghana), Fabio Coentrao (Portugal), Mark van Bommel (Holland), Xabi Alonso (Spain), Arjen Robben (Netherlands), Mesut Ozil (Germany), Robinho (Brazil), Miroslav Klose (Germany).

Manager: Joachim Low (Germany).

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