In our new regular Sunday feature, FIFA.com brings you the names of some of the best-known figures on Planet Football who will be celebrating their birthdays over the coming week.
May: Sunday best birthday wishes to a prominent footballing trio today. Former Netherlands international Dennis Bergkamp turns 40, and will doubtless spend a moment or two looking back on his illustrious playing career with his national team, Ajax, Inter and Arsenal. Vanderlei Luxemburgo (57), former Selecao coach, and CF Monterrey’s Chile star Humberto Suazo (28) are also celebrating today.
May: A Mexican duo will be popping the champagne on Monday. Giovani dos Santos (20) and Alberto Garcia Aspe (42) represent two different generations for El Tri. Dos Santos is currently battling to earn a place at his first FIFA World Cup™ in South Africa, whereas Garcia Aspe appeared in three finals between1994 and 2002.
May: Eighty-one cap former USA international Tom Dooley is 48 on Tuesday. The German-American dual national rates as a North American footballing idol after representing the USA at two FIFA World Cup tournaments. Andre-Pierre Gignac (24) is aiming to scale the heights previously achieved by Dooley. The leading scorer in Ligue 1 is currently in the thick of 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa™ qualifying with Les Bleus.
May: Yaya Toure is Wednesday’s best-known birthday boy. The Côte d'Ivoire midfielder, a Barcelona regular since joining the Catalan outfit in summer 2007, will be 26 today.
May: Thursday’s pair, Bayern Munich keeper Michael Rensing and Turkish FIFA World Cup participant Hakan Unsal, are arguably less well-known than Toure, but each has his own place in Planet Football’s lexicon. The German keeper, who turns 25 today, will be hoping for a regular spot between the sticks next term at the club he joined as a youth, whereas Unsal (36) hung up his boots back in 2006.
May: Twin brothers Frank and Ronald de Boer will be 39. Both represented the Netherlands at two FIFA World Cup finals (1994 and 1998) and finished their playing careers in Qatar. Frank de Boer has been the Netherlands’ assistant coach for some years now. Birthday wishes also go to Manchester United defender Patrice Evra (28), and New Zealand legend Danny Hay (34), who is set to appear at the FIFA Confederations Cup in June.
May: Germany striker Anja Mittag was a FIFA Women’s World Cup winner in China two years ago, and also boasts a bronze medal from the 2008 Olympics. Mittag will be 24 on Saturday.