France Football creates 'Ballon d'Or for goalkeepers', a new award exclusively for shot-stoppers, named after Lev Yashin
What's the story?
France Football magazine, that presents the coveted Ballon d'Or award to the world's best player annually, will now recognize the world's best goalkeeper with the newly incorporated Yachine trophy, named after former Soviet keeper Lev Yashin.
In case you didn't know...
Lev Yashin, who played for the erstwhile Soviet Union from 1954 to 1967, is the only keeper in the history of the sport to have won the Ballon d’Or award, in 1963. He was also named as the Goalkeeper of the 20th century by IFFHS.
When it comes to individual awards like the Ballon d'Or, players operating in the defense have always been overlooked and the scenario has been especially bad for the No.1s of the game, evident from the fact that since the turn of the century, no goalie has either been voted as the winner of Ballon d'Or or the FIFA World Player of the Year.
The heart of the matter...
The Yachine Trophy will seek to give more recognition to goalkeepers, who historically struggle to compete with outfielders for the individual awards.
After the legendary Black Spider, the best anyone had come out in the Ballon d'Or rankings was Italy's Gianluigi Buffon, who finished second behind his compatriot Fabio Cannavaro who won the award in 2006, after Italy claimed their fourth World Cup that year.
Well, the favorite for the inaugural award is Liverpool number-one Alisson Becker. The Brazilian enjoyed a wonderful season with club and country last term, winning the Champions League with The Reds and the Copa America with The Selecao.
He won the Premier League Golden Glove, having kept 21 clean sheets, also winning the same in the Champions League and completed a hat-trick of Golden Gloves when he also won it with Brazil at the Copa America.
At the UEFA awards ceremony that was organised last month, he was voted as the Goalkeeper of the season for Champions League 2018/19.
France Football also announced that the ten nominees for the inaugural award will be announced on October 21, with the ceremony taking place on December 2.
Modified 21 Dec 2019, 00:32 IST