Tag PFA Award

Tag PFA Award

Rooney nets more gongs

April 30, 2010 Tags: , , Shorts No comments

Wayne Rooney has picked up the Football Writers Association (FWA) Player of the Year award. It is the striker’s third individual award inside a week after 34-goal Rooney also secured the Professional Footballers Association (PFA) and PFA Fans’ Awards. With 80 per cent of the vote, Rooney beat both Didier Drogba in second and Carlos Tevez in third to the FWA gong.

“I am delighted to win an award with so much history and tradition,” said Rooney, who is sidelined with a groin injury.

“To follow a long line of wonderful players who have been honoured by the FWA since 1948 gives me real pride.”

“I would like to take this opportunity to thank my manager at United Sir Alex Ferguson, the coaching staff and my team mates without whose help and support this award would not have been possible.”

Rooney, a notoriously quick healer, is likely to miss Manchester United’s trip to Sunderland this weekend, although the striker may return for his side’s final Premier League game against Stoke City on 9 May.

Gallery: Rooney wins player of the year award

April 26, 2010 Tags: , Shorts No comments

Wayne Rooney picked up the PFA Players Player of the Year trophy in a ceremony last night. It is the first time Rooney has won the award, voted on by fellow professionals, having scored 34 goals this season. Rooney, who won the Young Player of the Year awards in 2005 and 2006, also made the PFA Team of the Year.

Aston Villa’s James Milner (below), linked with a £24 million move to United this summer, won the PFA Young Player of the Year award. Former Leeds United defender Lucas Redebe (below) won a special merit award.

Three other United players – Darren Fletcher, Patrice Evra and Antonio Valencia – also made the PFA Team of the Year.

Voting takes place in January, which might explain the absence of Chelsea’s Florent Malouda and Frank Lampard, whose campaigns have really taken off in the past two months. Similarly, Arsenal’s Thomas Vermaelen’s good start to the campaign but poor form this year is discounted in the team award.

Wayne Rooney

Wayne Rooney

Wayne Rooney

PFA Awards – all winners

Player of the Year: Wayne Rooney (Manchester United).

Young Player: James Milner (Aston Villa).

PFA Merit Award: Lucas Radebe.

Premier League Team of the Year: Hart; Ivanovic, Vermaelen, Dunne, Evra; Fabregas, Milner, Fletcher, Valencia; Rooney, Drogba.

Championship: Camp; Gunter, Coloccini, Williams, Diaz; Dorrans, Whittingham, Nolan, Adam; Carroll, Chopra.

League One: Davies; Richardson, Kisnorbo, Doherty, Harte; Hoolahan, Puncheon, Snodgrass, Bailey; Lambert, Holt.

League Two: Schmeichel; Brayford, C Dawson, Sharps, Kennedy; Davies, S Dawson, Jones, Law; Hughes, Le Fondre.

Giggs backlash begins

April 28, 2009 Tags: , Opinion No comments

Ryan Giggs was presented with this year’s Professional Footballers Association award for Player of the Year on Sunday night. But the Welshman barely had time to place the gong is his overflowing trophy cabinet before the backlash began. Quel surprise!

“He’s only started 12 Premier League games this season,” argued the Daily Mail before putting up Andy Towsend and Jamie Redknapp to argue their point. Pundit Towsend said, while answering the rhetoric question whether Giggs deserved the award,  that the “statistics say no” before going on to have an opinion on the matter himself. He thinks too, you know. Redknapp then demanded that the voting system be looked at, clearly wondering why non-Liverpool players are actually allowed to win.

Even Giggs’ former Welsh teammate John Hartson, fresh from winning nothing of note in his entire career, put the boot in by saying “personally, he wouldn’t have got my vote.” Fortunately, Hartson would still have to be a professional footballer to vote. Clue’s in the title, John. Then Liverpool’s long-forgotten England failure John ‘Errr’ Barnes ‘ Errr’ weighed in too, lending his support for Gerrard.

Meanwhile, over at the Scouse-loving BBC, online columnist ‘Pop’ Robson claimed that “any right thinking person would’ve plumped for Gerrard or Vidic.” Guess the pros who face Giggs week in, week out, just weren’t right-thinking enough for you Pop?

Not that we should let statistics tell the tale but, for the record, Giggs has played in 40 of United’s 58 games this season – exactly the same number as Gerrard. Good job Andy didn’t let the facts get in the way of a good headline!

Or perhaps Giggs – who has been a superb creative force from central midfield this season – does actually deserve the award? True, there has been no obvious candidate this year in the way Cristiano Ronaldo stormed to the award in the past two campaigns. Vidic, van der Sar, Ferdinand and even Gerrard have been excellent this season. But that’s the point, the votes were always likely to be split pretty evenly and in all probability Giggs won a close run contest.

After failing to come up with an clear – or consistent – alternative our friends in the press have now taken to patronising Giggs. Lauding the PFA prize as some kind of ‘lifetime achievement’ award made out of sympathy for a player in his swansong.

The truth is, of course, while many players will recognise Giggs’ 18 years service to the game, and his spotless professional record (no Red cards for United, no barroom brawls, no tabloid preening) – many actually voted for Giggs because of the quality of his football. No longer able to sprint up and down the left wing, number 11 Giggs has transformed his game to become a classic number 10 – picking out passes with ease and finding space where others can’t.

The Football Writers’ Award is announced in a few weeks, and after the shortlist of Liverpool, Arsenal and Chelsea nominees is whittled down, Steven Gerrard will take home the prize. Giggs meanwhile will walk off with his 10th Premiership crown. The mark of a genuine legend.