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Neuer is the new Ballon d'OrWhy? Because football is not and must not become solely about forwards.Manuel Neuer – the other player-of-the-year finalist with those superstars who need no first-name introductions – should get the gong not only to snap football out of monochromatic Messi-Ronaldo tunnel vision but because the Germany and Bayern Munich goalkeeper deserves it on his own merits.Neuer's skills on the ball, his sliding tackles as good as those of any defender and his prescient read of the game belie the notion that goalkeepers aren't really footballers.With Germany and at Bayern, Neuer is, of course, fortunate to be protected by formidable defenders and teammates higher up field drilled by Loew and Pep Guardiola to quickly win back the ball when they lose it.Given that Ronaldo won the Champions League this year with Real Madrid, scoring a single-season record 17 goals in the process, he would be entitled to pout if he's not player of the year again.Football already has enough kids who want to be Ronaldo or Messi.
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