Italian Serie A News, Results, Analysis and Features on Football Soccer

SerieAWeekly On June - 22 - 2011

Team Of The Season Winners: Central Midfield

All week we will be unveiling the winners of our Team of the Year voting with a mixture of regular and guest writers.

Hernanes: Lazio (34% of vote)

That Lazio bounced back to become serious contenders for European football owed much to their Brazilian midfielder.  He brought a balance, vision, flair and character to the team which it had sometimes lacked.  If they can keep a hold of him, they have a man who could be at the heart of constructing a serious challenge for a return to Champions League football.

Alberto Aquilani: Juventus (19%)

After spending a year with Liverpool in the Premier League and not meeting expectations, Beppe Marotta decided to take a gamble on Aquilani and brought him back to Serie A with Juventus. Aquilani has always been seen as a top talent and one of Italy’s best midfielders when in top form, so many were anxious to see if the Roman midfielder would sink or swim. After his performance this season, most people would agree that Aquilani swam. Aquilani quickly became a fundamental part of Gigi Delneri’s midfield and showed everyone around the peninsula that he still was the player everyone admired at Roma. His great performances were noted by Cesare Prandelli who brought him back to the National Team after a two-year absence. Aquilani showed all of his quality this season, including his excellent shot, his ability to go from box to box with ease, and his great vision and passing ability.

Mark van Bommel: Milan (17%)

A 34 year old signed on a six month loan didn’t really appear at the time to be a game changer, yet between January and the end of the season, Mark Van Bommel proved to be a vital cog in the machine that gave AC Milan the Scudetto. A thug by reputation and a midfield enforcer by trade, Serie A has seen both sides of the man, but thankfully much more of the latter. In fourteen appearances the player has seen six yellow cards, two of which were given in one game- his debut- thus leading to a red. However, it’s not his disciplinary record that Milan tifosi are talking about, but his impact upon their defensive record. Coach Massimiliano Allegri praised the player after Milan’s victory over Juventus, claiming “He is a very intelligent player who already understands Italian football well and gives good protection to the defence.” Since he was brought into the side, Milan did not concede more than one goal in league play the entire second half of the year and he has helped Milan reach clean sheets in half of their games after the Christmas break.

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