UEFA have announced the shortlist of contenders for the Coach of the Year and Player of the Year awards for the 2019/20 campaign.
For the first time ever, the Coach of the Year podium is dominated by three German coaches in Hans-Dieter Flick, Jurgen Klopp, and Julian Nagelsmann. All three of them had monumental campaigns with their clubs and have been nominated based on their performances both domestically and in Europe.
The Player of the Year shortlist is also dominated by the Bundesliga as Bayern Munich legends Robert Lewandowski and Manuel Neuer received nominations alongside Manchester City's majestic Kevin De Bruyne.
Bayern Munich coach Hansi Flick leads the way for the Coach of the Year shortlist with a nomination in his very first year as head coach of the Bavarians. The 55-year-old, who played over a 100 games for the Bundesliga champions, took over from Niko Kovac earlier on in the season and guided them to a second continental treble.
His compatriots Nagelsmann and Klopp also guided their sides, RB Leipzig and Liverpool respectively, to unprecedented achievements in the 2019/20 season. The former helped the Red Bull-powered giants reach their first-ever UEFA Champions League semi-final at the expense of two-time finalists Atletico Madrid.
Klopp, on the other hand, sent records tumbling with an imperious 18-point title win, which was Liverpool's first in the Premier League era. The German's Reds were simply magnificent in the English top-flight and registered their highest-ever tally of 99 points.
Other noteworthy coaches in the top ten included Thomas Tuchel (4), Gian Piero Gasperini (5), Pep Guardiola (8), and Zinedine Zidane (9), among others.
De Bruyne, who plies his trade for Klopp's arch-rivals Manchester City, was undoubtedly the best player in England during 2019/20. The 29-year-old levelled the all-time record for assists in a league campaign as he set up 20 goals scored a further 13 for the Cityzens.
The Premier League's Player of the Year is joined by the man who was the leading candidate for this year's Ballon d'Or, Robert Lewandowski, until the ceremony was called off. The Pole enjoyed a career-best season which saw him net a staggering 56 goals and guide Bayern to their second treble.
His teammate, Neuer, was also an integral cog to the unstoppable Bayern machine. The Bavarians' skipper came up clutch with a string of immense performances in goal for Flick's men and deservedly earned a nomination for this individual award.
The likes of Leo Messi (=4), Neymar (=4), Kylian Mbappe (7), and Cristiano Ronaldo (10) made the top ten list for the UEFA Player of the Year as well.
The winners of both awards will be announced in Nyon on Thursday, 1st October, during the UEFA Champions League group stage draw.
Published 23 Sep 2020, 16:42 IST