Picking a World Ambassador for Every Top Team

James McNicholasFeatured ColumnistJuly 25, 2013

Picking a World Ambassador for Every Top Team

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    If you had to choose one man to represent your club globally, who would it be and why?

    It's important to identify someone who embodies the values and identity of the club. It's vital that they're a positive role model and an inspiration on and off the field. It's also essential that their actions are sufficiently impressive to have a worldwide impact.

    Over the next 10 slides we name the current players and managers best suited to represent the biggest clubs in football as global ambassadors. 

Manchester United: Ryan Giggs

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    Ryan Giggs has Manchester United in his blood.

    The Welshman has spent his entire career at the club, and has now adopted a new player-coach role to pass on his experience to younger generations.

    It is considerable experience. Giggs has won a record 13 league titles and started 781 games for United.

    He is an eloquent, intelligent man and a footballer's footballer. Now that Sir Alex Ferguson has retired, Giggs has taken over as the man best placed to represent United globally. 

Manchester City: Joe Hart

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    Manchester City's recent takeover and subsequent luxuriant transfer policy means they are still struggling to find a coherent identity.

    However, one man is set to be a consistent figurehead for the team for the next decade: Joe Hart.

    At 26, Hart is still young for a goalkeeper. However, he is already one of the world's best. As England's No. 1 and a potential future international captain, he is assured global renown.

    Hart is frank and forthright off the pitch. His analysis of his own performances is admirable and assured. His influence will only grow, and City's identity will mould around his strong character. 

Chelsea: Frank Lampard

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    There is a reason that the Chelsea fans have dubbed their midfield maestro "Super" Frank Lampard.

    Lampard's achievements are nothing short of phenomenal. Last season, he became the club's highest ever goalscorer, beating Bobby Tambling's record of 202 Chelsea goals. For a striker to score that many goals would be remarkable. For a midfielder, it's unheard of.

    Unlike Chelsea captain John Terry, Lampard has largely avoided controversy on and off the pitch. He has had a distinguished career at both domestic and international level, and is rightly regarded as one of Chelsea's greatest ever players. 

Arsenal: Arsene Wenger

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    It is impossible to imagine Arsenal without Arsene Wenger.

    Wenger redefined the club in his image. He overhauled the football philosophy, the training ground and even the stadium. Wenger turned Arsenal into the modern club they are today.

    Arsene and Arsenal are indistinguishable. There is no better man to represent the Gunners on the global stage.

Barcelona: Xavi

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    Xavi once said of Cesc Fabregas that he has "Barcelona DNA." He could easily have been talking about himself.

    Xavi is a Catalan and a graduate of the esteemed La Masia academy. He is also the conductor-in-chief at the heart of Barcelona's iconic "tiki-taka" style.

    On the international stage, Xavi has transformed Spain from also-rans to world and European champions.

    Barcelona often boast of being more than a club. Xavi is more than a player. 

Real Madrid: Iker Casillas

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    Iker Casillas will surely be remembered as the greatest goalkeeper in Spain's history.

    Unusually for a goalkeeper, Casillas has twice been nominated for the European Footballer of the Year award.

    He has an incredible 148 caps for Spain, and at just 32, could be set to earn many more.

    Last season, a bust-up with Jose Mourinho saw Casillas dropped from the Madrid first team. Now that Mourinho has moved on, Casillas is set to reclaim his spot at the heart of the Bernabeu. 

Bayern Munich: Bastian Schweinsteiger

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    Bastian Schweinsteiger embodies the Bavarian brawn and teutonic technical ability that were the cornerstones of Bayern Munich's Champions League triumph last season.

    Bayern supporters have watched Schweinsteiger evolve from precocious teenager to inspirational leader.

    New Bayern boss Pep Guardiola will be relying on Schweinsteiger to form the backbone of his midfield as he seeks to continue Munich's dominance of European football. 

Borussia Dortmund: Jurgen Klopp

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    No individual encapsulates Borussia Dortmund's spirit of fun and flair better than the coach, Jurgen Klopp.

    Klopp's irrepressible personality and attractive playing style have made him a global managerial superstar.

    Klopp's loyalty to Dortmund is also noteworthy. He has shown no sign of wanting to capitalise on his increased profile to move elsewhere.

    He is dedicated to his project and his club. He is the perfect ambassador. 

AC Milan: Mario Balotelli

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    Mario Balotelli's headline-grabbing antics will make him a controversial choice as AC Milan's global ambassador.

    However, few athletes share Balotelli's capacity for enormous cultural impact. Balotelli is an icon.

    He is also an inspiration. His strong stance against racism in sport has been a catalyst to a shifting attitude in Serie A.

    Balotelli is the face of the new Italy, and the new Milan. 

Juventus: Antonio Conte

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    Antonio Conte was already a legendary Juventus player. He is threatening to become an even more celebrated manager.

    Conte won five Serie A titles as a Juventus player. Since becoming manager in 2010, he has already added a further two Serie A medals and a Supercoppa.

    Conte is Mr. Juventus.

     

    What do you think? Who would you choose for your club? Let us know below.