After landing the player of the tournament accolade at Euro 2008, and finishing third in the Ballon d’Or running three times since, Xavi is understandably favourable in the betting to be named Euro 2012’s best player at 10/1.
The Barcelona maestro, an integral cog in tournament favourites Spain’s side, is likely to be afforded the chance to compete more than other contenders for the award, with his side expected to go the distance in the competition.
Indeed, Spain are 11/2 shots to land what would be a second consecutive European championship, which would add to the World Cup 2010 success they achieved in their last outing at a major tournament.
Meanwhile, 32-year-old Xavi, a player never reliant on pace, maintains the attributes that have seen him afforded a spot in UEFA’s Team of the Year on two occasions since he was named Euro 2008 player of the tournament.
He also landed a position in the 2010 World Cup Best XI, showing the immense contribution he makes to successful Spanish showings at major tournaments.
With a pass completion rate that has far exceeded 90% over the past four years, Xavi is arguably the player most essential to Spain’s aesthetically pleasing style of football.
His Spanish team-mates remain close to him in the betting however, with Andres Iniesta, who scored the winning goal in the 2010 World Cup final, a 12/1 shot for the award.
David Silva is afforded the same price, and given his sparkling season for Manchester City, could see some support bearing in mind an eye for goal that is arguably sharper than his compatriots.
Mesut Ozil of Germany is favourite to claim the player of the tournament award meanwhile, and replication of his form at the 2010 World Cup would give him chances of justifying an 8/1 price for the gong.
His side are expected to go far in Poland and Ukraine, and after leading the assists chart in Germany’s last major tournament, a similar showing could see him named the competition’s best player.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.