UEFA Men’s Player of the Year nominees: Man City’s Kevin De Bruyne makes the shortlist

Manchester City star Kevin De Bruyne has been nominated for the prestigious award - here’s everything you need to know.

Manchester City midfielder Kevin De Bruyne has been nominated for the highly prestigious 2021/22 UEFA Men’s Player of the Year Award and he is one of just three players up for the accolade.

UEFA announced the news on  Friday 12 August, with the Belgian international in the running after yet another astonishing season for the Blues. He makes the final three for the third time in a row.

The 31-year-old has been a key player for City ever since he signed for the club in 2016, helping them to four Premier League titles, six domestic cups, and a Community Shield. Now De Bruyne has the chance to add to his already stacked trophy collection.

Here’s everything you need to know about the 21/22 UEFA Men’s Player of the Year Award, including the list of nominees, how to vote, and what De Bruyne achieved last season.

Kevin De Bruyne played further forward due to the arrival of Erling Haaland. Credit: Getty.

What is the UEFA Men’s Player of the Year Award?

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Founded in 2011, the UEFA Men’s Player of the Year Award is one of the most prestigious individual accolades a footballer can possibly win, and it is given to the player considered the best in Europe for the previous season.

It considers performances at both club level and in international competitions – in Kevin De Bruyne’s case, for City and Belgium.

Quite often players who achieved well in UEFA’s most elite competitions - the Champions League, Europa League and the European Championship - will have the best chance of winning the UEFA Men’s Player of the Year Award.

Who are the nominees for UEFA Men’s Player of the Year 21/22?

The final three players nominated for the UEFA Men’s Player of the Year Award are:

  • Karim Benzema (Real Madrid & France)
  • Thibaut Courtois (Real Madrid & Belgium
  • Kevin De Bruyne (Manchester City & Belgium)

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What did Kevin De Bruyne achieve last season?

De Bruyne’s 2021/22 season was one of his very best in a sky blue shirt and his fine performances were rewarded as he was named the Premier League Player of the Season.

The Belgian inspired City to the league title as he netted an incredible 15 goals and contributed eight assists in 30 league appearances.

He also helped the Citizens to the Champions League semi-final with two goals and three assists in 10 matches. He was described by Pep Guardiola as “the world’s best” at the end of the campaign.

How does the voting work for UEFA Men’s Player of the Year 21/22?

Unfortunately, the public cannot vote for the UEFA Men’s Player of the Year, with the award’s winner being decided by a dedicated jury.

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The jury, which voted to shortlist the top 15 players in European football, includes:

• Coaches of 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.

At the current, final stage the journalists selected by the European Sports Media will vote for who they think should be the winner out of Karim Benzema, Thibaut Courtois and Kevin De Bruyne.

Who has won the UEFA Men’s Player of the Year in the past?

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Cristiano Ronaldo, who has collected the accolade three times, is the player with the most UEFA Men’s Player of the Year awards to his name. Below is the full list of winners since it was established in 2011.

Cristiano Ronaldo has won the UEFA Men’s Player of the Year award more than any other player in history
  • 2010/11: Lionel Messi (Barcelona)
  • 2011/12: Andres Iniesta (Barcelona)
  • 2012/13: Franck Ribery (FC Bayern)
  • 2013/14: Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid)
  • 2014/15: Lionel Messi (Barcelona)
  • 2015/16: Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid)
  • 2016/17: Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid)
  • 2017/18: Luka Modric (Real Madrid)
  • 2018/19: Virgil van Dijk (Liverpool)
  • 2019/20: Robert Lewandowski (FC Bayern)
  • 2020/21: Jorginho (Chelsea)