By the last day of this month, one of Cristiano Ronaldo, Mohamed Salah or Luka Modric will have become the latest UEFA Men’s Player of the Year (POTY). All three players had a fantastic 2017/2018 season and have rightly been shortlisted for the award.
There wasn’t so much noise about the omission of Lionel Messi and Neymar Jr. from the final shortlist as there was about Mohamed Salah’s inclusion into the list.
Individually, Mohamed Salah, by all means, made it into the team on credit. His record-breaking 17/18 Premier League campaign meant he set a new record with the 32 goals that he scored. It was the highest any player had managed in a 38-game season, and also the highest any African had managed before the Egyptian came around.
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Add to that Salah’s 11 goals he scored in the UCL and his lone goal at the World Cup in Russia and it’s easy to see how well he did for himself. But one factor that may hold him back is that asides personal achievements, he, alongside his team, failed to win any trophy – both at club level and at international level.
Luka Modric’s football season was a total contrast. Although Real Madrid could not win the La Liga and the UEFA Super Cup during the time, Los Blancos claimed a fourth UCL title and he played a vital part in helping Zinedine Zidane to yet another Champions League title.
As if that was not enough, the midfielder captained his side at the World Cup, led them through the group stages with a 100% record and pushed them all the way to the final where they lost to France. Despite this loss, he still stood out among the rest as he was awarded the Golden Ball of the tournament.
Cristiano Ronaldo wasn’t as lucky. Before the World Cup, CR7 banged in goals for fun. The 2017/2018 season marked the eighth successive season he scored 50+ goals for club and country. Not bad for a player who, in his 30’s, chose to swap the Spanish La Liga for the Italian Serie A, instead of going to China or the MLS.
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Now a Juventus player, he has yet to score his debut goal. But it’s only a matter of time for the current FIFA The Best Men’s Player of the Year. His four goals at the World Cup may not have been enough to win the trophy, but his goal scoring feat and his importance to Real Madrid UCL title charge may just make him the preferred one for this UEFA POTY award.
All three players had a fantastic season. But only one can win the award! Who would you like to see win it? Leave us your comments and share your thoughts with us.