AP Global Soccer 10 Quotebox

December 18, 2012

Quotes from panelists voting in the AP Global Football 10 poll:

Leonardo Bertozzi, ESPN Brazil.

''Corinthians: The victory over Chelsea in the final of the Club World Cup returned the trophy to South America after six years, rewarding the brilliant work of coach Tite who did it without any world-class players.

Juventus: With the easy victory over Atalanta, Antonio Conte's team extended its lead to seven points atop Serie A and brought it the symbolic title of `winter champion' and showed the consistency rivals lack.


Barcelona: The 4-1 thumping of Atletico Madrid proved that Tito Vilanova players don't need to change a thing to reclaim the league title. Cassio: The star of the Corinthians victory in the Club World Cup received the Golden Ball award as the best player after at least three key saves in the 1-0 victory over Chelsea. The former PSV keeper ended the year on a high after claiming the starting position for Corinthians during the Copa Libertadores campaign. Messi: Six consecutive times scoring two goals enabled the Argentine to increase his record single-year total to 90.''

Christian Schatzle, Derfussballblogger.de, Germany.

''With 90 goals until now in 2012, Lionel Messi stands alone on all goalscorer lists in the world. Stefan Kiessling is gathering attention in Germany. He played a strong opening half to the season for Bayer Leverkusen and was the outstanding man with two goals and an assist in the 3-0 win over Hamburger SV. Besides Mario Goetze, who led Borussia Dortmund to the win at Hoffenheim, you have to mention Marc-Andre ter Stegen. The Moenchengladbach goalkeeper produced a brilliant performance for his side to claim a point at Bayern Munich.''

Jose Antonio Cortes, Record, Mexico.

''Counting only his 25 goals in the Spanish league (forget the controversy surrounding Zambia's Chilatu and others) Leo has scored more goals than 16 of the 20 teams in La Liga, and he is tied with Malaga. He's from another planet. Radamel Falcao: Without taking into account the loss against Barcelona, he scored a marvelous goal against Barcelona and could have had two more against the powerful Catalan side. Cassio Ramos: A collection of saves that brought Timao (Corinthians) the world club title.''

Tito Puccetti, ESPN, Argentina.

''Paolo Guerrero: An Inca warrior scored to give Corinthians the title. Corinthians showed they can defend in an organized way, but won the world club title by not forgetting to attack.''

Federico Giammaria, La Voz, Argentina.

''Lionel Messi: His goals come naturally. We've become accustomed to him scoring in sets of two. So far this year in the Spanish league season, he's never scored just one in a game. Incredible, literally. Cassio: The Corinthians keeper was the best player in the final against Chelsea; a perfect performance in a dream game.''

Orfeo Suarez, El Mundo, Spain

''Messi gets two goals more in the best match in La Liga. Barcelona has 13 points more than Real Madrid. Mourinho is in the worst situation since he arrived in Spain. Goalkeeper Cassio Ramos was hero in the final of the World Club Cup, that Corinthians won. Pirlo played his best match in the Calcio, and Juventus is on top by a long distance from Inter.''

Julian Bennetts, Hayters news agency, England.

''Scoring both your team's goals in their victorious World Club Cup campaign ensured Paolo Guerrero gets the nod this week. Also, it makes a change from always voting for Lionel Messi, who was once again outstanding as Barcelona beat Atletico Madrid in the big game in La Liga. There were also two superb two-goal salvos in the Premier League as Christian Benteke and Adel Taarabt served notice of their talent. Panagiotis Kone scored a contender for goal of the season in Italy as well, but this was a day dominated by Corinthians.''

Will Tidey, Bleacher Report, United States

Adriano starred in Barcelona's 4-1 win against Atletico Madrid, scoring the goal of the game to spark Barca into life. Messi: another week, another brace. I've written that before, I'll write it again. Adel Taarabt: the QPR midfielder can be a frustrating proposition, but on Saturday we saw his considerable talent on full display against Fulham. Andrea Pirlo: the bearded genius was by all accounts at his imperious best as Juve beat Atalanta 3-0. Atletico Madrid presented the latest challenge to Barca. Tito Vilanova's side swept it aside.''

Mike McGrath, Wardles/The Sun, England.

''The coverage in Japan shows the World Club Cup is growing in importance. Cassio's performance was also pleasing to see as strikers often get the glory but his efforts in goal for Corinthians were rewarded with the Golden Ball.''

Tom Timmermann, St. Louis Post-Dispatch

''Corinthians are the first non-European club I've put on my ballot. I feel a little awkward putting the club that's sixth in the Brazilian standings in my top 10, but they beat Chelsea, which counts for something. Paris Saint-Germain jumping over Lyon made the decision easy at the bottom of the top 10. Even though Atletico Madrid is ahead of Real Madrid in the Spanish standings, but Real won the head-to-head meeting, so they get placed on top. Players who do good things in very important games should get a little extra credit, which is why Cassio's play in the Club World Cup gets top billing this week, ahead of standby Messi, who usually is in the top spot.''

John Duerden, Asian football writer.

''Lee Woon-jae of South Korea. The 2002 World Cup goalkeeper finally retired. A great career. 132 appearances, 4 World Cups, 2 Asian trophies, 4 K-League titles.''

Panelists: Cedric Rouquette, Eurosport. Aurelio Capaldi, Rai Sport. Orfeo Suarez, El Mundo. Mike McGrath, Wardles/The Sun. Will Tidey, Bleacher Report. Gregor Derichs, Germany. Julian Bennetts, Hayters news agency. Francois Colin, De Standaard. Shintaro Kano, Kyodo news agency. Paolo Condo, Gazzetta dello Sport. Christian Schatzle, derfussballblogger. Tom Timmermann, St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Tito Puccetti, ESPN Argentina. Jerome Touboul, L'Equipe. Federico Giammaria, La Voz. Jose Antonio Cortes, Record, Mexico. Filip Bondy, New York Daily News. John Duerden, Asian Football Writer, South Korea. Leonardo Bertozzi, ESPN Brazil.