Rome: Inter Milan captain Javier Zanetti has been awarded the Premio Scirea by Italian journalists.
The award, announced yesterday, has been running yearly since 1992 and is given to players over 30 who have had an “exemplary career”.
For the first time this season it was also open to foreign players who have been plying their trade in Serie A for at least 10 years and Argentine Zanetti thus became the first foreign winner.
The honour is named after Gaetano Scirea, the legendary former Juventus sweeper, who spent 14 years at the Italian giants after beginning his career at Atalanta.
The former Juventus and Italy captain died in a car accident in Poland in 1989 when he was the assistant coach at Juve under Dino Zoff.
Zanetti polled 231 of the 371 votes to join the likes of Franco Baresi, Roberto Baggio, Paolo Maldini, Gianfranco Zola and Alessandro Del Piero as winners of the award.
I`ve always said the person who wins the world championship this year is the person who does the best job on the circuit, but that does not seem the way it is at the moment.