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Harry Redknapp: My Euro 2012 Team of the Tournament

Buffon and Gerrard are both in Harry's Euro 2012 team

"Pirlo's passing has been peerless, his composure and ability to dictate the tempo of matches is masterful and, on current form, he’d get in any team in the world... I’m playing a diamond with this team and I’ll have Ronaldo roaming just behind Balotelli."

We've still got the Euro 2012 final to come - read Harry Redknapp's preview here - but we thought it was time to put our man on the spot and ask him for his team of the tournament.

There's still time for somebody to take the Euro 2012 final by storm and, with the array of attacking talent on show, that's likely. Will Andreas Iniesta score the winner for Spain, as he did at the World Cup two years ago, or will Mario Balotelli blitz Italy as he did Germany in the semis? Both players have made it in to my team tournament so see what you think of my selections.

Goalkeeper

Gianluigi Buffon: His tendency to punch rather than catch might give me a few flutters but at 33 he's not going to change his habits. He's made important saves in the knockout stages and he breathes confidence in to his defence. Strong leader too.

Defence

Glen Johnson: I've always rated Glen and he did his reputation the power of good at the Euros. Made some crucial tackles and interceptions and is a growing threat down the flank. Four good games.

Pique: He's quietly become a bedrock of the world champions and probably the best club side in the world. Spain's record of four consecutive clean sheets going in to the final deserves serious praise.

Giorgio Chielleni: Italians defend as men and this guy eptiomises their spirit. He has considerable nous. He missed the England game but was brave and influential in the win against Germany.


Philip Lahm: The German captain did everything he could to drive his team on in the second-half of their semi-final defeat. His tenacity, penetrating runs and shooting mean he's an asset to any team.

Midfield

Luka Modric: Obviously, I'm well acquainted with Luka's abilities. He's a major talent and fantastic lad and, although he only played three matches in an unlucky Croatia side, there were glimpses of what a star performer he is.

Andrea Pirlo: My player of the tournament. His passing has been peerless, his composure and ability to dictate the tempo of matches is masterful and, on current form, he'd get in any team in the world.

Steven Gerrard: England's best player had four excellent games and restored his reputation in international football. He may no longer make the lung-busting runs he used to but his crossing was superb and he can still break up play and launch attacks.

Andreas Iniesta: I marvel at his passing for Barcelona and Spain. For his country he doesn't have a Lionel Messi to play in so he works his went in to the box and is an excellent finisher too. He could have the final say for Spain on Sunday.

Cristiano Ronaldo: I'll have Ronaldo roaming just behind the striker. After a 60-goal season for Madrid he came to the Euros and did his country proud. He was the spearhead as they attacked Spain in the semi-final and who knows how things might have turned out if he'd taken a kick in the shootout.

Attack

Mario Balotelli: Is he worth the trouble? Yes. What a performance that was in the semi-final, Germany's defence, usually rock-solid were run ragged, unable to deal with his power and pace. When he's on song, few defenders can live with him. Can he add a Euro 2012 winners medal to his Premier League one?

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29 June 2012

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