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.
13. Jonathan de Guzman (28) represented the Netherlands at the 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil™, where he and his team-mates finished third, having previously competed at the 2008 Men’s Olympic Football Tournament in Beijing. The incisive midfield man began his career with Feyenoord, where he captured the Dutch Cup, prior to enjoying spells with Mallorca and Villarreal. In 2012, he was sent out on loan by El Submarino Amarillo to Swansea City, with whom he later lifted the English League Cup. De Guzman subsequently signed for current club Napoli, where he held aloft the Italian Super Cup in 2014.
14. Gunter Netzer (71) hoisted the 1974 World Cup and the UEFA EURO 1972 trophy with West Germany. At club level, the iconic attacking midfielder spent ten successful seasons with Borussia Monchengladbach, winning two Bundesliga titles and a German Cup, and reaching the final of the UEFA Cup in 1973, a match his side lost to Liverpool. A high-profile move to Real Madrid saw Netzer earn winners’ medals in two Spanish Liga campaigns and two Copa del Rey finals. The two-time German Footballer of the Year then saw out the rest of his playing days with Swiss giants Grasshopper.
15. Johan Neeskens (64) was part of the Netherlands’ golden generation that invented ‘Total Football’ and reached two World Cup finals. At West Germany 1974, he played in all of his country’s matches, scoring five goals, while at Argentina 1978, he was an instrumental cog in the well-oiled Dutch machine. In addition, the all-round midfielder finished third at EURO 1976. He rose to prominence at Ajax, where he secured two Dutch League titles, two Dutch Cups, three European Cups, a European Super Cup and an Intercontinental Cup. Neeskens then joined Barcelona, with whom he brandished the Spanish Cup and a European Cup Winners’ Cup. In the latter part of his career, the influential Dutchman turned out for a number of clubs, before moving into coaching, fulfilling the role of assistant with the Oranje, the Australian national side, Barcelona and Galatasaray. Between 2011 and 2012, he took charge of South African outfit Mamelodi Sundowns in his own right.
16. Keisuke Tsuboi (36) starred for Japan at Germany 2006 and at the 2003 and 2005 FIFA Confederations Cups. The composed centre-back spent 13 campaigns with Urawa Red Diamonds, during which time he landed a J. League title, an Emperor’s Cup, a J. League Cup, a Japanese Super Cup and an AFC Champions League crown. That continental success paved the way to an appearance at the 2007 FIFA Club World Cup, where he finished third. Earlier this year, Tsuboi committed himself to Shonan Bellmare.
17. Edilson (45) took part in Korea/Japan 2002 with Brazil, where the Verde-Amarela picked up a fifth global crown. The skilful striker made his name at Palmeiras, where he scooped two Brazilian League titles and a Sao Paulo State Championship. Further success came at Corinthians, where he added two league titles, another Sao Paulo State Championship and a Club World Cup (a tournament at which he was awarded the adidas Golden Ball) to his CV, and at Flamengo, with whom he clinched a Copa dos Campeoes and a Rio de Janeiro State Championship. The Brazilian international also pulled on the jerseys of, among others, Vitoria, Vasco da Gama, Cruzeiro, Japanese outfits Kashiwa Reysol and Nagoya Grampus, and Emirati side Al Ain, where he lifted the UAE President’s Cup.
18. Li Tie (39) helped China to qualify for their first and thus far only World Cup, at Korea/Japan 2002, where he made three appearances in the group stage but could not prevent his country’s early exit. The defensive midfielder also played at two AFC Asian Cups, in 2000, where he finished fourth, and in 2007. He started out at Liaoning, where he won a Chinese League title, but subsequently exported his skills to England, where he defended the colours of Everton and Sheffield United. Upon returning to his homeland, he put pen to paper with Chengdu and then Liaoning again, where he prevailed in the Chinese Super Cup. After retiring from the game, Li Tie worked as an assistant coach with Guangzhou Evergrande, the Chinese national XI and Hebei. Earlier this year, the Shenyang native was promoted to coach of the last-named team.
19. Ulrich Rame (43) emerged victorious from EURO 2000 with France, although he watched all of the games from the bench. The following year, the reliable custodian did see some action at a major tournament, acting as Les Bleus’ last line of defence three times – including their semi-final success versus Brazil – as they triumphed at the Confederations Cup. He was also part of the French squad that travelled to Korea/Japan 2002. Rame turned professional at Angers, but it was at Bordeaux where he scaled the heights of club football, obtaining two Ligue 1 titles, three French League Cups and a Trophée des champions. In 2011, he was transferred to Sedan, where he saw out the remainder of his career.