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UEFA Awards 2018-19: Top 3 Contenders for Men's Player of the Year

ANALYST
Top 5 / Top 10
10 Aug 2019, 02:06 IST

Barcelona v Liverpool - UEFA Champions League Semi-Final: First Leg
Barcelona v Liverpool - UEFA Champions League Semi-Final: First Leg

UEFA has announced its nominees for Best Forward, Midfielder, Defender and Goalkeeper. Marc Ander ter-Stegen, Hugo Lloris, and Alisson Becker were named as nominees for UEFA Best Goalkeeper of the Year. Frenkie de Jong, Christian Eriksen, and Jordan Henderson comprise the list of midfielders. Virgil Van Dijk, Trent Alexander-Arnold, and Matthijs de Ligt, we shortlisted for Defender of the Year. Finally, Cristiano Ronaldo, Sadio Mane, and Lionel Messi were named as contenders for UEFA Forward of the Year.

In addition to the shortlist presented, it is announced on UEFA's official site that the shortlist for UEFA Men's Player of the Year and Women's Player of the Year will be announced two weeks before the UCL Group Stage draw, which will take place in Monaco, on Thursday, August 29th. All awards will be presented on the same day as that of the group stage draw.

Last year, Luka Modric won the UEFA Men's Player of the Year award ahead of Cristiano Ronaldo and Mohamed Salah. Let us take a look at the top 3 contenders for UEFA Men's Player of the Year 2018-19.

#3 Alisson Becker

Alisson Becker in action in the Community Shield game
Alisson Becker in action in the Community Shield game

Alisson Becker has been a brilliant signing for Liverpool. He was arguably the best goalkeeper in three competitions last season - Copa America, UEFA Champions League, and the Premier League. He won the Golden Glove in these three competitions, as well.

Alisson started all 13 Champions League games for Liverpool and kept 6 clean sheets across the tournament, including the final against Tottenham Hotspur and the second leg of the semi-final against Barcelona. His save percentage stood at a high 79% while he made 3.5 saves per game. He also averaged 21 accurate passes per game at 77%.

In the final against Tottenham, the Brazilian stepped up to the plate, making 8 saves in total, four of which were from inside the box. He weathered the storm and allowed Liverpool to play a low-intensity game, acted as the 11th outfield player as his 44 touches suggested, and facilitated Jurgen Klopp's men to execute the gameplan and seal the deal in the dying minutes.

The 26-year-old has been worth every single penny that Liverpool paid for his services. He has more than justified his price tag and he has made a strong case for his contention as the Best Player, rather than just the Best Goalkeeper.

Alisson stands a high chance of being among the nominees for UEFA Men's Player of the Year but the same cannot be said for him winning it, simply due to the competition he faces.

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