Soccer: Nelsen named in World Cup's 'Best 11'

All Whites soccer skipper Ryan Nelsen has been named in a "World Cup Best 11" picked by American sports television channel ESPN.

Nelsen earned his place by "defending defiantly throughout the tournament and heroically against Italy", it said.

Last month, international football website goal.com named Nelsen its world player of the week for "inspiring his side to two draws (against Slovakia and defending champions Italy) and giving the All Whites a shot at last 16 qualification".

ESPN's Best 11: goalkeeper - Eduardo (Portugal), rightback - Philipp Lahm (Germany), centrebacks - Carles Puyol (Spain), Ryan Nelsen (New Zealand), leftback - Carlos Salcido (Mexico), midfield - Bastian Schweinsteiger (Germany), Xavi (Spain), rightwing - Thomas Muller (Germany), attacking midfielder - Wesley Sneijder (Netherlands), leftwing - David Villa (Spain), striker - Diego Forlan (Uruguay).

Substitutes: Justo Villar (Paraguay), Maxi Pereira (Uruguay), Lucio (Brazil), John Mensah (Ghana), Fabio Coentrao (Portugal), Mark van Bommel (Holland), Xabi Alonso (Spain), Arjen Robben (Netherlands), Mesut Ozil (Germany), Robinho (Brazil), Miroslav Klose (Germany).

Manager: Joachim Low (Germany).

- NZPA

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