Mexico is the Olympic gold medallist in the men’s football tournament, having seen off Brazil after two weeks of remarkable competition that will be remembered for the shock results as much as it will excellent play. Here, Goal.com rounds up the XI outstanding performers from the tournament.
It’s only fitting to start with a member of the winning side, with goalkeeper Jose Corona forming the base of the Mexico team that performed so superbly. When required, the controversial over-age pick showed terrific reflexes, making several crucial saves and thoroughly justifying his choice ahead of Ajaccio’s Guillermo Ochoa.
The defense has a strongly Asian feel, with Maya Yoshida the outstanding Japan defender as his side enjoyed a watertight competition before coming up against the eventual winner. South Korea also had a formidable record at the back, Suk-Young Yoon was a major contributor. From the host nation, Steven Caulker enjoyed a fine tournament. Danilo rounds off the defenders, after several exciting showings for Brazil.
Ki Sung-Yueng was perhaps the competition's outstanding central midfielder, producing his best when it mattered most for South Korea, for which he was a star. Moving forward in the midfield, Oscar was an instrumental force in building Brazil’s attacks, showing why Chelsea was so willing to spend so much money to capture his signature. Tottenham’s Giovani dos Santos, meanwhile, was a potent force for Mexico, while Yuki Otsu was arguably Japan’s outstanding player of a tournament the team will reflect on as being highly successful.
In attack, the contribution of Leandro Damiao to Brazil’s run to the silver medal was outstanding. He struck six goals and provided much of the offensive platform for his side. Alongside him is one of the breakout stars of the competition in the form of Moussa Konate, who was so inspirational for Senegal. Indeed, his efforts in the African nation’s first two games earned him Goal.com’s World Player of the Week award, but he was outstanding throughout and registered on five occasions.