Happy Birthday: Thiago Silva, Emmanuel Petit, Carlos Correa

Sport360 staff 14:53 22/09/2016
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(Clockwise): Carlos Correa, Emmanuel Petit and Thiago Silva.

The word Brazil conjures up images of stellar forwards Ronaldo, Neymar, Rivaldo, Pele and Socrates. However, this doesn’t discount the fact the South Americans have produced excellent defensive talent over the years.

Thiago Silva, 32 today, is one of the most highly rated defenders in the world. With Fluminense, it was difficult to exclude the Rio native due to his intelligence and workrate on and off the ball.

In 2009, he signed for AC Milan and established himself as one of the best defenders in Europe, winning Serie A and Super Coppa titles with the Rossoneri in 2010 and 2011.

Three years later, Milan sold the Brazilian to PSG for €42m, thereby occupying the spot as second most expensive defender in history, just behind Rio Ferdinand.

With Le Parisiens, he amassed numerous pieces of silverware including four consecutive Ligue Unes, three Coupes de la Ligue and the Coupe de France.

On the international stage, the centreback captained Brazil to 2013 Confederation Cup glory before finishing fourth in the World Cup the following year.

More sports stars born on this day:

1970: Emmanuel Petit, French midfielder who played for Arsenal, Barcelona, Chelsea and his national side (45).

1992: Daniela Ospina, Colombian volleyball player who features for VP Madrid. Sister to Arsenal goalkeeper and wife to James Rodriguez (24).

1994: Carlos Correa, Puerto Rican shortstop named 2015 Rookie of the Year after hitting .279 with 22 home runs (22).

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