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Former Bafana Bafana midfielder Steven Pienaar's top-five moments in Europe

Posted: 1 March 2018 Time: 16:30

Steven Pienaar enjoyed nearly two decades of professional football in Europe before calling time on his career but there were five particular highlights that stood out.

Pienaar, 35, officially hung up his boots on Wednesday after appearing in two World Cup finals for Bafana Bafana and winning 61-caps for the national team.

After graduating from the Ajax Cape Town academy as a teenager, Pienaar's last official game for the club he won the Rothman's Cup final, with the Urban Warriors thumping Orlando Pirates 4-1.

This was the first of many accolades the technically gifted midfielder would revel in during his career.

1. Winning the Dutch Eredivisie in the 2001/02 season and in the 2004/05 season with Ajax Amsterdam.

2. Winning the AFC Ajax Talent of the Year award in 2003 and finishing as runner-up to then FC Groningen winger Arjen Robben, for the Eredivisie Young Player of the Year award.

3. Finishing as the top-assist provider in the 2005/06 UEFA Champions League campaign where Pienaar's profile in Europe sky-rocketed due to the dominant performance against Premier League side Arsenal - where the South African faced up against Cesc Fabregas, Robert Pires and Mathieu Flamini.

4. Reaching the FA-Cup final with Everton but losing out 2-1 to Chelsea after Didier Drogba and Frank Lampard cancelled out Louis Saha's opening minute goal at the iconic Wembley Stadium.

5. Prior to his lucrative switch to Tottenham Hotspur, Pienaar was voted as Everton player of the year in 2010, after scoring seven goals and registering five assists in 38 games for the Toffees in the Premier League and Europa League respectively.

Article by: Lorenz Kohler
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