Robert Lewandowski was voted European Footballer of the Year on Thursday. The Bayern Munich forward succeeds Virgil van Dijk, who received the Men’s Player of the Year Award last year.
Lewandowski was given preference over Bayern Munich goalkeeper Manuel Neuer and Manchester City midfielder Kevin De Bruyne after the draw for the Champions League group stage in Nyon, where the prize was awarded.
The 32-year-old Pole had a great last season. He won the league title, DFB Pokal, German Super Cup and Champions League with Bayern Munich and scored no less than 55 goals in 47 official matches.
In addition to Van Dijk and thus Lewandowski, Lionel Messi (2011 and 2015), Cristiano Ronaldo (2014, 2016 and 2017), Andrés Iniesta (2012) and Franck Ribéry (2013) have also been crowned European Footballer of the Year in recent years.
Pernille Harder was voted European Football Player of the Year. The Chelsea attacker, who came over from VfL Wolfsburg for a record amount this summer, trumped Wendie Renard and Lucy Bronze from Olympique Lyon.
The UEFA awards, which have been awarded since 2011 and can only go to footballers playing for a European club, is unrelated to the French magazine’s Golden Ball France Football and the FIFA Player of the Year title.