Sneijder picks up most Man of the Match fan awards at World Cup

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The Independent Football

FIFA named Diego Forlan of fourth-placed Uruguay the tournament's best player, and Thomas Müller of third-placed Germany won not only Best Young Player but also the Golden Boot for most goals scored, but it was Wesley Sneijder of the Netherlands' runners-up team who can consider himself the people's favorite over the course of the tournament.

Sneijder was voted Man of the Match by visitors to the FIFA website on four occasions. Standing out during the Netherlands' first match against Denmark, he received the accolade again in the second group match against Japan and then the quarter-final against Brazil.

It was the Netherlands - Uruguay semi final that proved decisive, as Sneijder's eye-catching display led to the fan vote falling in his favor and out of reach of Spain's dynamic midfielders Xavi Hernandez and Andres Iniesta.

Cristiano Ronaldo put in three Man of the Match-winning performances during Portugal's four-game run, as did Japan's Keisuke Honda. Iniesta and Forlan also finished the tournament with three.

The Spanish and Dutch teams' players won Man of the Match six times: Iniesta, Xavi, and David Villa for one and Sneijder, Arjen Robben, and Robin van Persie for the other.

Fourteen award-winners played their club football in Spain, and 14 in England (including Landon Donovan and Vladimir Stojkovic who were there on short-term loans).