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Who should win the Golden Ball?

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Photo by ISIphotos.com

FIFA announced its 10 finalists for the World Cup's Golden Ball Award Friday, with Spain garnering three of the nominees.

David Villa, Xavi and Andres Iniesta are joined by Wesley Sneijder, Arjen Robben, Mesut Ozil, Bastian Schweinsteiger, Diego Forlan, Asamoah Gyan and Lionel Messi on the final ballot.

Villa and Sneijder lead the tournament with five goals apiece and are front-runners for the Golden Boot, although Forlan, Miroslav Klose and Thomas Mueller could surpass them with multiple-goal outputs in the third-place match.

Mueller is among the three finalists for the Best Young Player award along with Mexico's Giovani Dos Santos and Ghana's Andre Ayew.

Who do you think should win the Golden Ball? Do you think anybody was snubbed from the list of finalists for either award?

Share your thoughts below.

Comments

  1. Forlan, best player on the worst team of the final four teams. And he really played big at big times. Really impressive tournament, especially for a play-in team.

    I’m probably a homer for this, but I also think Donovan deserves a place on the best 11.

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  2. Mueller is a total, mortal lock for Best Young Player. I think Forlan should take the Golden Ball, since he was by far the most influential for his team (and probably could be out front for the Golden Boot as well had he taken more opportunities for himself rather than dumping them to Suazo). I could live with Schweinsteiger; Villa would be my third choice, over Sneijder.

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  3. Dos Santos scored how many goals. I may be biased but did he have as much as an impact as Altidore. Neither belong on the list but wow.

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  4. Can’t we wait until after the final?

    I would say Sneijder and Xavi are the leaders, but I think what happens in the final should matter, just a bit (sarcasm).

    Forlan and Schweinsteiger are best after that. Mueller is the snub, and I almost hope he doesn’t go off on Sat, I’ll be sick over his BS ban for the semi’s. Germany’s counter attack would have had an extra gear for sure.

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  5. It has to be Sneijder and Mueller. Villa might have scored practically all of Spain’s goals, but he was set up by Iniesta and Xavi; he’s a spectacular finisher, but that’s still a superficial method.

    Imagine, then, a Netherlands without Wesley Sneijder. Who was the only reason they pulled out a win against Japan, and even more astonishingly Brazil. He is carrying a team to the finals.

    Mueller goes without saying, Germany were missing him pretty bad in the semis. Credit to Spain for playing defense, but no way would the Germans have gone that quietly with him in the lineup.

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  6. I agree that Gyan is a good player, both for Ghana and Rennes. But let’s be objective here, should he really be in the short list for the Golden Ball award? And continuing in this line of thought, I also think Messi shouldn’t be there as well. We are talking about the 10 players who have made a difference for their teams in this WC: Sneijder, Robben, Forlan, Schweinsteiger, etc… There is no hate for Gyan; I just think he is not one of the best 10 players in this WC.

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  7. To me, in any sport, it’ll always be about the humble guys who shine by thru their play, making everyone around them championship quality better. Doubly so if they go about it in such a quiet way that you hardly notice. The Anti-Ronaldos. In that respect, Xavi gets my vote, without exception, with Forlan trailing. If you go by the media and the public comments, people are just starting to realize Xavi not only is the best player in this tourney, but in the World. Would Messi be as strong an argument without Xavi’s genius? Seems only way he’d be better rated is if he rolled up to Joburg on Sunday in a Lambo and gold fronts. Presently, the world likes flash, speed, stepovers, and goals. Pizzazz! It generates all the $$$’s and #’s… “The greatest trick the devil ever pulled was convincing the world he doesn’t exist”. Xavi is soccer’s Kaiser Sose.

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  8. At times Josy was dominant?? Are you insane? Watch Forlan in the last 20min of the first half against netherlands that was domination. Watch Drogba for Chelsea in the last game of the premier last season- that was domination. Watch iniesta command the midfield and make space where he sees fit- that is domination. To say that at times Josy was dominant is like saying at time Ives objectively evaluates Bob Bradley’s coaching talent.

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  9. In Gyan’s defense, he scored the goal that beat Serbia, the goal that salvaged a point against Australia, and the goal that won a round of sixteen game against the favored United States. He wasn’t one of the tournament’s ten best, but he isn’t a ridiculous inclusion, and he had the biggest impact on the tournament of any African player. And it’s not like he took a spot away from someone that could have won.

    The bigger head-scratcher is Messi.

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  10. Always suprised at the lack of love for Xavi. In my mind his only competition for Golden Ball is his marginally less consistent partner Iniesta. I mean no disrespect to Forlan, Sneijder, or Schweinsteiger; all of whom are having great tournaments; but no one is doing as much for his team as Xavi.

    Maybe it because he makes the sublime look easy and only creates the chances?

    Now, do I expect him to win? Nope, I’m guessing he will be overlooked again in the bright lights of goal scorers and players exerting more effort to cover for thier lack of anticipation.

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  11. It’s a shame that Rico Clark didn’t make this list. He was absolutely essential for both England and Ghana.

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  12. Xavi if Spain win. Sneijder if Holland win. Obviously if Robben has a brace or Villa nets a hat trick they could easily grab the Golden Balls (sorry Beckham).

    Muller is the young player of the tournament without hesitation. He is going to be an amazing player for the next decade.

    Forlan could win, but it has to go to a player on the winning team. Ultimately, winning a World Cup garners more respect than playing a good tournament.

    And I don’t understand the hate for Gyan. He is an amazing player and was secluded all tournament by himself. He was Ghana’s best player, Ayew close second.

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  13. MESSI?!?! ARE YOU SERIOUS?!

    Sneijder and Müller for me. Villa deserves it though if he scores more than Wesley in the final, particularly the game winner.

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  14. Agreed as well but as you know FIFA is as politically correct as they come. It’s why the refs have sucked so bad… Saudi Arabia? Kazakhstan? Mali?

    And did Messi really do ANYTHING to deserve to be on that list?

    Forlan is my winner.

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  15. Forlan has been the most influential player and has shown great skill. Mueller is a clear winner. Not really close IMO.

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  16. I would say Forlan. He carried his team all the way to the semi finals. He made some huge plays. I think that muller is a lock for the young player award. Had he gotten to play against spain I think we would have seen his name on the golden ball award list.

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  17. I’d like to see Forlan win it but it will either go to Villa or Sneijder depending on who wins the tournament. Those are the 3 stars of the tournament to me. I think Forlan is the classiest of the 3 and exceeded more expectations individually and with his team than the other 2 but ultimately do you give the Golden Ball to a guy on the 3rd or 4th place team, not usually.

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  18. I would definitely pick Forlan. But where’s the love for Villa? The guy has scored all but two of Spain’s goals, some of which were very, very clutch.

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  19. Forlan definitely did the most single-handedly. The only reason they had a prayer vs. the Netherlands was because of him.

    Man, if we beat Ghana I bet Donovan is on there instead of Gyan. That’s the way it goes I guess.

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  20. id have to say either forlan or bastian, as both were central in the success their respective teams garnered. any of these players can have a case made for them of course other than messi, but as well as villa has player he has not been the most important to his team, rather iniesta or xavi. Id say forlan at the end of the day because game in and out he was a threat, scoring the most goals outside of the 18 in the history of the cup (or tying the record) and constantly scoring when uruguay was down a goal. Also let us remember that he was probably the only player in the tournament able to tame the jubalani, putting countless set pieces on net and scoring on 2 i believe.

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  21. Sneijder wins it though Robben, Villa, Klose and Schweinsteiger would not be bad choices.
    @ahm: I agree totally with your comment regarding Gyan’s inclusion. This is an example of home town bias. There was a need to include at least an African in the list and Gyan was the best of the mediocre group. If the same criteria was used (if there is one) in picking the finalists for the Golden Ball, then Donovan or Bradley would have been equally reasonable choices. I am not saying they should be in the list (actually, they should not) but if Gyan is there, then Donovan or Bradley should be there as well.

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  22. Everyone on the list played in the semi-finals except for Messi and Gyan. Both had a strong tournament, but so did plenty of other guys. Messi is in because he’s Messi, and Gyan is in because he’s African.

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  23. Sneijder and Mueller.

    Mueller is a lock for young player. Sneijder as long as he doesn’t disappear in the final.

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  24. Man I wish Michael Bradley was young enough to be on the list for Best Young Player because he was a boss in the midfield. I think he totally would have a good chance at getting the award or at least coming up short to Mueller who should win it.
    Too bad Jozy didn’t score because he would have been on the list. Even though he didn’t put one in the net he had a good tournament, at times he was dominant. Damn I wish he would have scored because he was knocking on the door a couple of times.

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  25. Muller for best young player definitely. It’s a toss up between Robben and Schweinsteiger for me. They were two of the best ball handlers I saw all tournament. Followed closely by Forlan.

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  26. Diego Forlan no doubt. He carried the team on his back and led them further than anybody expected. He can score from set pieces or from the run of play and is also unselfish. Forlan was instrumental in Uruguay’s success, more so than any of the other players for their respective teams IMO.

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  27. I think, depending on Sunday’s match, the Golden Ball winner will be either Villa or Sneijder. However, I think the best player in this tournament has been Bastian Schweinsteiger.

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  28. uhhh asamoah gyan? he makes two penalties, misses the biggest, and puts in one goal and he’s a top 10 tournament player? that’s a joke

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