Karim Benzema, Thibaut Courtois and Kevin De Bruyne are the top three nominees for the 2021/22 UEFA Men’s Player of the Year award.
The winner will be named – along with the UEFA Men’s Coach of the Year and Women’s Player and Coach of the Year – during the 2022/23 UEFA Champions League group stage draw ceremony in Istanbul on Thursday 25 August.
UEFA Men’s Player of the Year nominees (in alphabetical order)
Karim Benzema (Real Madrid & France)
The French striker was named 2021/22 UEFA Champions League Player of the Season after driving Real Madrid on to a record 14th European title, and his fifth since he joined from Lyon in 2009. His final tally of 15 goals earned him top spot in the competition scoring charts .
Thibaut Courtois (Real Madrid & Belgium)
The goalkeeper, who won the Spanish Liga with Madrid, was the Player of the Match in the Champions League final after making several stunning saves to deny Liverpool in Paris, most notably from Sadio Mané and Mohamed Salah.
Kevin De Bruyne (Manchester City & Belgium)
The midfield schemer makes the top three for the third season in a row. He was named as the Premier League Player of the Season after inspiring City to another domestic title, his fourth during his seven seasons at the club.
The rest of the top 15 players
4 Robert Lewandowski (Bayern, now Barcelona & Poland) – 54 points
5 Luka Modrić (Real Madrid & Croatia) – 52 points
6 Sadio Mané (Liverpool, now Bayern & Senegal) – 51 points
7 Mohamed Salah (Liverpool & Egypt) – 46 points
8 Kylian Mbappé (Paris & France) – 25 points
9 Vinícius Junior (Real Madrid & Brazil) – 21 points
10 Virgil van Dijk (Liverpool & Netherlands) – 19 points
11 Bernardo Silva (Manchester City & Portugal) – 7 points
12 Filip Kostić (Eintracht Frankfurt & Serbia) – 7 points
13 Lorenzo Pellegrini (Roma & Italy) – 5 points
14 Trent Alexander-Arnold (Liverpool & England) – 2 points
15 Fabinho (Liverpool & Brazil) – 1 point
What is the UEFA Men’s Player of the Year award?
For this award, players in Europe, irrespective of nationality, have been judged in regard to their performances over the whole season in all competitions – both domestically and internationally – at either club or national team level.
How were the players shortlisted?
An initial shortlist of 15 players was selected by UEFA’s technical study group.
The top three nominees were voted by a jury comprising the following:
• The clubs that participated in the group stages of the 2021/22 UEFA Champions League, UEFA Europa League and UEFA Europa Conference League
• A group of journalists selected by the European Sports Media (ESM)
Jury members chose their top three players, with the first receiving five points, the second three and the third one. Coaches were not allowed to vote for players from their own team.
The other award nominees
Men’s Coach of the Year: Carlo Ancelotti, Josep Guardiola, Jürgen Klopp
Last year’s winner
Jorginho won the 2020/21 UEFA Men’s Player of the Year award after becoming only the tenth player to win a European Cup and a EURO in the same year. The midfielder inspired Chelsea to UEFA Champions League glory with his ability to dictate play and Roberto Mancini took note, making him the linchpin of Italy’s EURO 2020-winning side.