Gilberto Silva answers his critics
Gilberto Silva had a brilliant game for Brazil in their second group game against Ivory Coast on June 20th.
He was integral in breaking up many of the Ivory Coast’s attacking moves, and he made a few great passes forward to the attackers in the first half.
He even had a volley shot from inside Ivory Coast’s area. It was blocked, but still.
After the game, he said:
“Qualifying for the next phase is not enough for Brazil, as our first challenge is to finish as the absolute leader of the group, ahead of Portugal and North Korea.
It turns out, too, that Gilberto is the hardest working Brazilian player in terms of distance run during a game. Translated from Brazilian magazine, Placar:
Midfielder Gilberto Silva, 33, is Brazil’s oldest player. Even so, he was the player who covered the most distance in Brazil’s first two games of the World Cup in South Africa after this Sunday’s 3-1 victory over the Ivory Coast.
In all, the “volante” (”invisible wall”) has covered 22,124 meters, with 11,054 during the first game, and 11,070 in the second. Moreover, the defensive midfielder made only one foul in the two games. If the player before the World Cup was unpopular in Brazil, he is answering his critics on the pitch.
The movement from Gilberto Silva is something to be envied by the three players in the team of 26 years. This is because the second most energetic player for Brazil was the left winger, Michel Bastos, who ran 19,577 meters over both games. Following is Felipe Melo who ran 19,493 meters, while Robinho covered 19,423.
Among the rest of the players, obviously goalie Julio Cesar ran the least (with 8.735km). Following him, defender Juan, 31, has been the most static, with 15,580 meters, followed by midfielder Elano (replaced in the second game), who despite making some good passes and being active in the game, covered just 15,882 meters.
How fantastic for Gilberto! The oldest, but most energetic.