Atletico Madrid ace takes accolade after outstanding tournament...Uruguay striker Diego Forlan has claimed the prestigious Golden Ball, awarded to the tournament's best player, for his performances at the 2010 World Cup in South Africa.
- Forlan wins Golden Ball as Mueller takes young player & Golden Boot
- Germany's Mueller wins young player award
- Spain's Iker Casillas wins Golden Glove
- Germany’s Mueller wins Golden Boot ahead
- Spain add FIFA fair play award to their overall triumph
Uru-guy | Forlan excelled for South Americans
How Forlan triumphed
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Deemed something of a failure during his time at Manchester United, Forlan arrived in South Africa with the bit between his teeth, desperate to prove his worth on the world stage having excelled during his time in Spain with both Villarreal and, most recently, Atletico Madrid.
Supported by the impressive Luis Suarez and Edinson Cavani, Forlan spearheaded Uruguay's attack throughout the tournament and, despite not troubling the scorers in his country's opener against France, was off the mark with two goals in a terrific attacking display against hosts South Africa.
The 31-year-old was always involved and hungry to impress whether it was the first or last minute of each and every game and following a telling contribution in the round of 16 win over South Korea, where Forlan crossed for Suarez to open the scoring in a 2-1 win, he again proved his Golden Ball credentials in the quarter-final.
A man of the match display against Ghana saw him score a wonder strike from a free-kick before he kept his cool in the penalty shoot-out to help his side set up a semi-final clash with the Netherlands.
Despite losing out against the Dutch, Forlan was hugely impressive once again as he beat goalkeeper Maarten Stekelenburg with a swerving long-range effort in a match where it was later revealed he had not even been anywhere near fully fit.
Uruguay's loss was seemingly Forlan's gain as, in the 3-2 third place play-off defeat to Germany, the ex-Manchester United man was in imperious form as he showed sublime technique to volley home after 51 minutes before striking the bar with a dipping free-kick in the final seconds of the match.
Captain's goal | Forlan dragged Uruguay back into the game against the Dutch
Atletico Madrid 2009-10
The 2009-10 season proved to be an extremely fruitful one for Forlan at club level as he helped Atletico win the Europa League with a brace in a 2-1 win against Fulham in the final in Germany.
Not only was the former Independiente hitman the star of the show in Hamburg, Forlan grabbed two goals in the semi-final triumph over Liverpool, including an extra-time winner at Anfield, to set up the clash with the Cottagers.
Atletico finished a disappointing ninth in La Liga although with 18 goals, Forlan was the Spanish league's fifth highest scorer behind such names as Lionel Messi, Gonzalo Higuain, Cristiano Ronaldo and David Villa.
Golden Ball winners since 1982
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