Forlan shares Golden Ball praise

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Golden Ball winner Diego Forlan dedicated his award for the outstanding player at the World Cup to his Uruguay team-mates.

Forlan, who finished in a four-way tie with Thomas Muller, Wesley Sneijder and David Villa for the Golden Boot top-scorer award with five goals, was named the recipient of the player of the tournament shortly after Sunday's final.

Villa of Spain and Sneijder of the Netherlands picked up the Silver and Bronze Ball awards respectively following Spain's 1-0 victory over the Dutch in the Soccer City final.

Forlan had earlier helped Uruguay reach the semi-finals where they lost to the Netherlands, but afterwards the Atletico Madrid striker paid tribute to the help he received from his team-mates.

"It's as great as it is unexpected. I never even imagined something like this, nor did I have my sights set on it," he said.

"As I'm a striker, I perhaps could have seen myself chasing the Golden Shoe, and in fact I came close. That would have been more normal.

"But to go from that to winning the prize for the best player, I'm enjoying it and I'm delighted, but I'm very aware that it's the result of the spectacular tournament the team has had.

"It's another reward for this positive period for Uruguayan football."

Uruguay were narrowly beaten 3-2 by Germany in Saturday's third-place play-off and a rueful Forlan added:"I'm heading home a little sad because, having watched the final, it hit me how close we were to playing in it.

"Losing the semi-final was a really cruel blow, which took me a couple of days to get over and which I still find hard to swallow."

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