Argentinian giants Boca Juniors, the club which the great Diego Maradona calls his own, took top honours at the Blue Stars/FIFA Youth Cup 2010, proving once again that the conveyor belt of talent coming through their ranks shows no signs of abating. Despite heavy rainfall on 12/13 May 2010 in Zurich, the Buenos Aires starlets showcased their fine technical skills en route to securing the prestigious title.
It took a nail-biting penalty shoot-out in the final to determine the 72nd winner of the Blue Stars/FIFA Youth Cup. After twice baulking when just one kick away from glory, the South Americans eventually celebrated their second title thanks in large part to captain and goalkeeper Ramiro Martinez, who was later voted best player at the tournament in his position.
Mexico's CF America finished third, ahead of FC Basle of Switzerland and Borussia Dortmund from Germany. Places six to eight were claimed by Grasshoppers Zurich (Switzerland), Mallorca (Spain) and Celtic (Scotland). South African club Kaizer Chiefs came in ninth and also collected the FIFA Fair Play Award, while hosts FC Blue Stars finished tenth.
Buff on song
In spite of some decidedly disagreeable weather, the Buchlern sports facility provided the perfect backdrop for the finest young talents from Europe, the Americas and Africa to battle it out for the coveted trophy. With the 2010 FIFA World Cup™ taking place just a few weeks later in South Africa, plenty of fans seized the opportunity to get into the mood with their vuvuzelas and impressive chanting.
Once again the Blue Stars/FIFA Youth Cup lived up to its unique billing as one of the most esteemed youth tournaments in the world. The quality of football was typified by the top-class performances of 2009 FIFA U-17 World Cup winner Oliver Buff, the FC Zurich midfielder who was awarded the Golden Ball as the tournament's best player.