In our regular Sunday feature, FIFA.com presents you with some of the biggest names in football who will be celebrating their birthdays over the coming week.
20. Lucas Digne (21) has just taken part in the FIFA World Cup™ for the first time, starring in France’s group-stage match against Ecuador at Brazil 2014. The talented defender rose to international prominence one year ago, when Les Bleuets captured the FIFA U-20 World Cup in Turkey. He currently plays his club football for Paris Saint-Germain.
21. Anthony Annan (28) made five appearances in Ghana’s most successful World Cup to date, South Africa 2010, where the Black Stars reached the quarter-finals. The skilful central midfielder has also participated in the last four CAF Africa Cup of Nations tournaments, finishing third in 2008 and reaching the final versus Egypt in 2010. He began his career with Ghanaian outfits Sekondi Hasaacas and Hearts of Oak, before trying his luck in Norway with Kristiansand-based Start, who proceeded to loan him out to fellow Tippeligaen side Stabaek, where he later picked up a league winners’ medal. A move to Rosenborg saw the confident African claim two further Norwegian League titles, a Norwegian Super Cup and the 2010 Norwegian Footballer of the Year award, a series of successes that attracted the attention of Schalke, who acquired his services in 2011. Since then, Annan has enjoyed one-season loan spells with Vitesse Arnhem and with Osasuna.
22. Dirk Kuyt (34) has just competed in his third successive World Cup, after Germany 2006 and South Africa 2010, where the Netherlands finished as runners-up to Spain. In Brazil, the energetic winger was part of the Dutch team that secured a creditable third place. In addition, he appeared at the UEFA European Championships of 2008 and 2012. After turning out for Utrecht, Feyenoord and Liverpool, Kuyt signed for Fenerbahce in 2012, and has since won the Turkish League and Turkish Cup with the Istanbul club. His international team-mate Daryl Janmaat (25) shares his birthday and his propensity for tireless running, as he demonstrated in his five outings in Brazil this summer. The hard-working right-back previously pulled on the jerseys of ADO Den Haag, Heerenveen and Feyenoord, prior to recently putting pen to paper with Newcastle United.
23. Luiz Gustavo (27) played a key role in Brazil’s 2014 World Cup campaign, although he was unable to prevent the Seleção from exiting at the semi-final stage. Last year, the defensive midfielder contributed to his nation’s impressive FIFA Confederations Cup victory. The South American made his name in Germany, representing Hoffenheim and then Bayern Munich, with whom he scooped a Bundesliga title, German Cup, German Super Cup and UEFA Champions League crown. Gustavo joined Wolfsburg in August of 2013.
24. Daniele De Rossi (31) is coming off the back off his third World Cup for Italy, having experienced the highs of 2006 and the lows of both 2010 and 2014. The dynamic midfield man also took part in the Confederations Cup in 2009 and 2013, finishing third at the latter tournament. He previously appeared at the European Championships of 2008 and 2012, and collected a bronze medal at the 2004 Men’s Olympic Football Tournament. A product of Roma’s youth academy, De Rossi made his first-team debut in 2001, and has since developed into a mainstay of the team. The versatile Italian has lifted the Coppa Italia twice and the Supercoppa Italiana once during his time with I Giallorossi.
25. Ariane Hingst (35) held aloft the FIFA Women’s World Cup™ with Germany on two occasions (2003 and 2007), and earned three bronze medals at the Women’s Olympic Football Tournament (in 2000, 2004 and 2008). The industrious holding midfielder also has four UEFA European Women’s Championship titles to her name. At club level, she landed two Frauen-Bundesliga crowns, three German Cups and a UEFA Women’s Cup with Turbine Potsdam, before moving to Swedish club Djurgardens and then FFC Frankfurt, with whom she hoisted another German Cup. Hingst exported her skills to Australia in 2011, where she defended the colours of Newcastle Jets and Canberra United.
26. Angelo Di Livio (48) participated in two World Cups with Italy – France 1998 and Korea/Japan 2002 – as well as in EURO 1996 and EURO 2000, where La Nazionale reached the final against France. The dependable midfielder played in the country of his birth throughout his career, starting at Roma and ending at Fiorentina, with stints in between at Reggiana, Nocerina, Perugia, Padova and Juventus, where he added three Serie A Championships, an Italian Cup, two Italian Super Cups, a UEFA Champions League title, a UEFA Super Cup and an Intercontinental Cup to his footballing CV.