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Monday, October 22, 2007

The Race for The Golden Ball

France Football announced this morning the list of 50 candidates for the 2007 Golden Ball winner, which will be assigned on the 2nd of December in Paris. The recognition will be handed following the votes of a jury made up 96 newspapers, amongst which 8 Italian ones.

Milan is heading the list of Italian clubs with 6 nominations; these are the Rossoneri present in the list: Ricky Kakà, Rino Gattuso, Filippo Inzaghi, Paolo Maldini, Andrea Pirlo and Clarence Seedorf.
Ahead of Milan only Barcelona and Real Madrid, with 7 players per head, and behind the Rossoneri there are Chelsea (4), Bayern Munich (3) and Liverpool (2).

Therefore there are multiple and constant in time the recognitions which have gratified the Rossoneri at the start of the season.

Here are some examples:
- The list of 30 candidates for the “Fifa World Player 2007” sees four Rossoneri players, of which Milan is very proud: Gattuso, Nesta, Pirlo amongst the Italians, and Kaka with regards to the Brazilians. The winner will be elected on the 17th of December by the coaches and captains of all the national teams in the world. Amongst the nominations, Barcelona is the team which has the highest number of candidates (7), but Milan is the Italian team with most players in the run for the award.
- During the away game of Milan at Montecarlo for the European Super Cup Final, on the 30th of August, during the ceremony of the draw of the calendars for the Champions League 2007/08, three awards were handed out to three Rossoneri players for the past season in the Champions Leagues:
Paolo Maldini, best defender in the Champions League 2006/07;
Clarence Seedorf, best midfielder in the Champions League 2006/07;
Kaka, best attacker and best overall player in the Champions League 2006/07
- On the 1st of September, on the return from the victory in the European Super Cup at Montecarlo, Filippo Inzaghi received the ‘Gaetano Scirea Award’ to highlight the exemplary career of the Rossoneri’s player.
- On the 22nd of September, before the Milan-Parma game at San Siro, Carlo Ancelotti was elected best coach of the 2006/07 season by ESM which regroups the European Sports Magazines.
- On the 5th of October, at the Sports Centre of Milanello, the winners of the third edition of the FIFPro World XI Player Awards were announced. The awards were handed out thanks to the votes of the players’ syndicates around the world. There were almost 45,000 votes which arrived from 42 syndicates. Amongst the 55 nominates for the ideal 2006/07 formation, there were nine Rossoneri players: Maldini, Nesta, Maldini, Nesta, Gattuso, Pirlo, Inzaghi, Dida, Kakà, Seedorf and Ronaldo. Amongst the Rossoneri, Kaka won the best player award of 2006/07 and Alessandro Nesta, together with Kaka was named in the top 11 of the 2006/07 season.

Galliani Happy To See Dida Ban Cut

The Brazilian had been handed a two-match ban after over-reacting to an altercation with a fan during the Champions League clash with Celtic at Parkhead on October 3.

However after an appeal by Milan, UEFA's Appeals Body today decided to reduce the penalty to just one game.

This news came after Dida had offered a public apology at the Giuseppe Meazza Stadium before the Serie A match with Empoli yesterday afternoon. The 34-year-old repeatedly bowed to each section of the Milan crowd in an emotional gesture.

"Nelson was in Nyon with Cantamessa and I think that a one match suspension is right - it's ok like this," said Galliani.

"Two matches seemed too much, but Dida made a mistake so one match is correct. He made a mistake that did not bring any damage to anyone, neither to Celtic nor to any other player.

"Reading the rules, you understand that one match is right, but to have two, violence has to be involved, and that was not the case. At most Dida was a victim of violence.

"As far as his apology to San Siro go, Dida made a nice gesture that I think it helped fix the player's relationship with the fans. It was his own idea and the club did not suggest anything."

Jankulovski and Dida out of Shakhtar match

AC Milan were hit with a blow ahead of their crunch Champions League clash against Ukraine champions Shakhtar Donetsk as left-back Marek Jankulovski was ruled out.

The Czech player injured his knee in the dismal home defeat to Empoli on Saturday and Milan said Monday that he would not be fit for Wednesday.

Milan face a crisis having picked up only three points from four Serie A home games this season, leaving them trailing leaders Inter Milan by 10 points in the title race.

They also lost their last Champions League clash 2-1 at Celtic, after which goalkeeper Dida was hit with a one-match suspension for feigning injury.