Fabio Cannavaro is an Italian former professional footballer. Cannavaro is considered to be one of the greatest defenders of all time. He spent the majority of his career in Italy. He started his career at Napoli, before spending seven years at Parma, with whom he won two Coppa Italia titles, the 1999 Supercoppa Italiana, and the 1999 UEFA Cup. After spells at Internazionale and Juventus, he transferred along with manager Fabio Capello from Juventus to Real Madrid in 2006, with whom he won consecutive La Liga titles in 2007 and 2008. Cannavaro has also achieved success with the Italian national team. He was part of the Italy team that won consecutive Under-21 European Championships in 1994 and 1996. After earning his first senior cap in 1997, he helped his national team to the final of Euro 2000, being named to the team of the tournament, and eventually became captain in 2002, following Paolo Maldini’s retirement. Cannavaro led Italy to victory in the 2006 FIFA World Cup in Germany, and was given the nickname “Il Muro di Berlino” (“The Berlin Wall”) by the Italian supporters due to his defensive performances, which saw Italy keep five clean sheets and concede only two goals, neither of which were in open play; he was later awarded the Silver Ball after being named the tournament’s second best player. In 2009, he overtook Maldini as the most capped player in the country’s history. He retired from international football on 25 June 2010 following Italy’s failure to qualify for the knock-out stages of the 2010 World Cup, having amassed 136 caps and scored two goals for the senior national team. In total, he has represented Italy at four FIFA World Cups, two UEFA European Championships, the 1996 Summer Olympics, and the 2009 FIFA Confederations Cup. He is currently Italy’s second all-time appearance holder, behind Gianluigi Buffon, and has made the most appearances for Italy as captain (79).
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Fabio Cannavaro signed for Juventus in 2004. The deal also involved the exchange of reserve goalkeeper Fabian Carini, who left for Inter, both players priced €10 million. By moving to Turin, he reunited with his ex-Parma teammates Lilian Thuram and Gianluigi Buffon, and together the threesome formed one of the most feared defences in the Serie A. Along with the likes of Gianluca Zambrotta, Gianluca Pessotto, Alessandro Birindelli, Jonathan Zebina and Federico Balzaretti. They went on to win two consecutive Scudetti in 2005 and 2006, although they suffered consecutive quarter final eliminations in the Champions League. In the former season, he was also paired with club icons Paolo Montero and Ciro Ferrara. Cannavaro also won four Oscar del Calcio awards, the Italian Football Oscars, for his exceptional seasons with the Turin giants, winning the 2005 defender of the year, the 2006 defender of the year award, the 2006 Italian player of the year, and the 2006 player of the year.Cannavaro played for Juventus for two seasons. After the 2006 World Cup, the Calciopoli trial verdicts relegated Juventus to Serie B. Since Juventus were ineligible to qualify for the Champions League, Cannavaro decided to leave. “Even if I know this may be hard to believe, I would have stayed at Juventus had they remained in Serie A – even with a 30-point deduction.” He followed Juve manager Fabio Capello to Real Madrid in the summer of 2006. In his two-year Scudetto-winning stint with Juventus, Cannavaro made over 100 total appearances in all competitions. His transfer was met with disappointment from the Juventus fans, who had accepted him as one of their own.
Match Issued Shirt
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This shirt’s style was never used during the Tim Cup 2004-2005. It was issued but never worn.
ITALY NATIONAL TEAM
Fifa World Cup “GERMANY 2006”
Match Worn Shirt
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Cannavaro captained Italy throughout their successful 2006 World Cup campaign with composure and aplomb under manager Marcello Lippi. One of his key performances came in a 2–0 extra-time win against hosts Germany in the semi-finals of the tournament: in the last minute of extra-time, with Italy leading 1–0 and facing a German attack, Cannavaro outjumped Per Mertesacker to clear the ball from his area. He subsequently ran forward to dispossess Lukas Podolski, and carried the ball up to Francesco Totti in midfield, who started the play that led to Italy’s second goal, which was scored by Alessandro Del Piero from an assist by Alberto Gilardino. However, Cannavaro’s crowning moment was lifting the World Cup on 9 July 2006, the night of his 100th cap. Cannavaro did not receive a single yellow or red card during the 690 minutes he played in the tournament. His defensive performance in the final earned him the nickname of “Wall of Berlin”, as the final was played in Berlin. Along with goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon, Cannavaro played each minute of every match in the tournament for Italy, completing 211 passes and winning 16 challenges. Even with usual defensive partner Alessandro Nesta out due to injury, the Italian defence kept a record five clean sheets and conceded only two goals throughout the entire tournament: an own-goal against the United States and a Zinedine Zidane penalty in the final against France. Cannavaro’s leadership and marshalling of the Italian defence throughout their march to the final earned him a place in the All-Star Team at the end of the competition (awarded by FIFA’s Technical Study Group) alongside six other Italian teammates: Gianluigi Buffon, Francesco Totti, Gennaro Gattuso, Andrea Pirlo, Luca Toni and Gianluca Zambrotta. He was runner-up in the race for the Golden Ball, finishing behind French counterpart Zinedine Zidane; it was a close contest with Zidane polling 2012 points to Cannavaro’s 1977. Cannavaro was also awarded the 2006 Ballon d’Or and the 2006 FIFA World Player of the Year for his performances throughout the season and at the World Cup, also being named to the FIFPro World XI and the UEFA Team of the Year.
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Cannavaro is considered one of the greatest defenders of his generation, and of all time, winning the World Cup as Italy’s captain, as well as the Ballon d’Or and the FIFA World Player of the Year Award in 2006. Although he predominantly excelled as a centreback, due to his ability to read the game, he was also deployed as a right or left sided fullback on occasion, in particular under his Inter coach Héctor Cúper. This was made possible due to Cannavaro’s tactical intelligence, versatility, technical ability, ball playing ability, stamina, low centre of gravity, and pace, which also enabled him to start plays from the backline after winning back possession. As a defender, Cannavaro was known in particular for his concentration, anticipation, awareness, and positional sense; despite his relatively small stature for a defender, he was highly regarded for his aerial ability, courtesy of his elevation, physical strength, athleticism, timing, and heading accuracy, which enabled him to outjump larger players, and made him particularly adept at defending crosses, or at scoring with his head from set-pieces. Throughout his career, he made a name for himself as a dynamic, consistent, tenacious, and complete defender, known for his acceleration, speed, reactions, and agility, as well as his tackling ability, and in particular, his precise sliding challenges; due to his wide range of skills, he excelled in a zonal marking system, but was also an excellent man marker. Nicknamed “Canna” (“reed”), by his former Italy defensive teammate Paolo Maldini, as a reference to his surname and mental strength, in addition to his ability as a defender, Cannavaro was also known for his leadership, determination, strong temperament and charisma, both on and off the pitch, as well as his ability to organise his defence. Cannavaro also attributes his positive character, calm composure under pressure, and self-assurance in his abilities, as well as his diet, work-rate and discipline in training, as some of the key reasons for his success as a footballer, as well as his ability to inspire confidence in his teammates.In Italy’s final 2009 Confederations Cup group match against Brazil, Cannavaro equalled Paolo Maldini’s record of being Italy’s most capped player, although Italy were defeated 3–0 and were disappointingly eliminated from the tournament in the group stage. On 12 August 2009, in a friendly match against Switzerland, Cannavaro became Italy’s most capped player of all time. He won his 127th cap for his country, beating Maldini’s former record of 126.
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After the 2006 World Cup, the Calciopoli trial verdicts relegated Juventus to Serie B, Cannavaro followed Juve manager Fabio Capello to Real Madrid. Real Madrid paid €7 million to sign him and gave him the No. 5 shirt that had previously been worn by former Madrid player and French international Zinedine Zidane. Cannavaro spent three seasons at Madrid, winning the La Liga title in 2006–07 and 2007–08, and being named the 2006 FIFA World Player of the Year, also winning the 2006 Ballon d’Or. Cannavaro was elected as part of the 2006 and the 2007 FIFPro World XI squads, and the 2006 UEFA Team of the Year. He was named in the six man shortlist for the 2007 Laureus World Sportsman of the Year.
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On August 12th 2009 Fabio Cannavaro broke the appearance record for the Azzurri during the friendly game with Switzerland. Cannavaro surpassed Paolo Maldini with 126 appearances. Cannavaro made his 127th appearance. Cannavaro’s debut for Italy was during a crucial World Cup qualifying game against England at Wembley in February 1997. Thrown in at the deep end in one of football’s most intimidating arenas, Cannavaro produced a master-class to completely silence Alan Shearer as Italy won 1-0 thanks to Gianfranco Zola’s iconic goal. A special captain armband was made to celebrate this record with a golden 127 embroidered on.
127th Italy National Team’s Cap
Switzerland vs Italy
Italy National Team
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Cannavaro married Daniela Arenoso (born 17 July 1974 in Naples) on 17 June 1996, they have three children, Christian (born 17 July 1999 in Naples), Martina (born 22 December 2001 in Naples) and Andrea (born 20 October 2004 in Naples).Cannavaro’s younger brother, Paolo, is also a defender who currently plays for Sassuolo. The two brothers played alongside each other at Parma from 2000 until 2002, when Fabio left for Inter. Before his retirement, Fabio had often expressed interest in ending his career with Paolo in a Napoli shirt.With his fellow Neapolitan friend and former defensive teammate Ciro Ferrara, Cannavaro has helped establish a charity foundation, Fondazione Cannavaro Ferrara, specialising in the procurement of cancer research equipment and surgery for special cases of cancer for a hospital in their native Naples; the foundation also aims to help at risk youth in Naples.Cannavaro was sponsored by sportswear company Nike and appeared in Nike commercials. In a global Nike advertising campaign in the run-up to the 2002 World Cup in Korea and Japan, Cannavaro starred in a “Secret Tournament” commercial (branded “Scopion KO”) directed by Terry Gilliam, appearing alongside football players such as Thierry Henry, Ronaldo, Francesco Totti, Ronaldinho, Luís Figo and Hidetoshi Nakata, with former player Eric Cantona the tournament “referee”. Cannavaro was on the cover of the Italian edition of SCEE’s This is Football 2003. Cannavaro also features in EA Sports’ FIFA video game series; he was named to the Ultimate Team Legends in FIFA 14.
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Cannavaro captained Italy at the 2010 World Cup in South Africa, once again under Marcello Lippi, although his performances were not as strong as in previous editions, and he and the Italian squad received criticism from the press. The defending champions crashed out of the competition in the first round, losing 3–2 to Slovakia after drawing against New Zealand and Paraguay. Following Italy’s failure to progress past the group stage, Cannavaro announced his retirement from international football. In total, Cannavaro made 136 appearances for Italy between 1997 and 2010, scoring 2 goals, making him the second-most capped Italian player of all time, behind only Gianluigi Buffon. Cannavaro currently holds the most appearances for Italy as captain, wearing the armband on 79 occasions.