Manchester City’s Kevin de Bruyne and Chelsea pair N’Golo Kante and Jorginho are in the running for Uefa’s 2020-21 male player of the year award after topping an all-midfield shortlist published on Thursday.
All featured in Euro 2020 – De Bruyne for Belgium, Kante with France and Jorginho with winners Italy – and the shortlist is the first in the 11-year existence of the award to feature only midfielders.
Uefa did not reveal the number of votes cast for the three.
Barcelona’s Lionel Messi, the six times Ballon d’Or winner who has moved from Barcelona to Paris St Germain, was fourth on the list.
Bayern Munich’s Polish striker Robert Lewandowski, last year’s winner, came in fifth with PSG’s Gianluigi Donnarumma and Kylian Mbappe sixth and seventh.
The top player from Euro 2020 finalists England was Manchester City’s Raheem Sterling in eighth. Portugal and Juventus forward Cristiano Ronaldo was ninth and Norway and Borussia Dortmund striker Erling Haaland 10th.
The votes were cast by coaches of the 24 national teams that featured at Euro 2020 as well as 80 coaches of clubs that played in the group stages of Uefa’s competitions and journalists from each of Uefa’s 55 member associations.
The winner will be named on August 26, along with Uefa’s women’s player of the year and Champions League positional award winners, at the Champions League group stage draw in Istanbul.
The women’s shortlist is comprised of three Barcelona midfielders – Jennifer Hermoso and Lieke Martens along with Alexia Putellas.
The shortlist for men’s coach of the year featured Champions league finalists Pep Guardiola of Manchester City and Thomas Tuchel of Chelsea along with Italy’s Roberto Mancini.
The women’s team coach of the year has two men in the running with Barcelona’s Lluis Cortes and Sweden’s Peter Gerhardsson up against Chelsea’s Emma Hayes. (Reuters)