Chelsea’s ever-green French midfielder N’golo Kante has won the Professional Footballers’ Association Player of the year award for his outstanding displays for the blues in the 2016-17 season.
The 26-year old Chelsea midfielder considered the engine of the title chasing London side beat fellow club mate Eden Hazard, Tottenham’s Harry Kane, Everton’s Romelu Lukaku, Manchester United striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Arsenal’s Alexis Sanchez in the vote decided by only fellow players.
“It’s a huge honour to be chosen by the other players. It’s the biggest honour to get this award.” Kante said after receiving his accolade.
The demunitive midfielder who has become key in Chealsea’s double run in for the premier league and FA titles was also key to Leicester City’s surprise Premier League win last year and could become first player to achieve the distinction of winning successive titles with different clubs.
Whereas Chelsea with Kante are on the ascendancy after finishing mid-table last season, Leicester without Kante is struggling in the relegation danger zone.
DELE ALI IS YOUNG PLAYER OF THE YEAR
Tottenham’s Dele Alli won the young player prize for the second successive year. Manchester City’s Lucy Bronze won the Women’s Player of the Year award.
Alli’s young player prize is consolation for his omission from the six-man shortlist for the senior award, despite scoring 16 goals from midfield as Spurs have mounted a serious title bid.
“It’s an unbelievable feeling, especially to be voted by the other players as well.
“It’s been an unbelievable season for us all. I think we’ve just got to keep going, keep fighting and keep improving as a team.”
Birmingham’s Jess Carter was named Women’s Young Player of the Year
The midfielder is on course to win the Premier League with Chelsea, having done so last season at Leicester, and added: “My first two seasons were very beautiful. Last season was very beautiful. This season so far, we have had a good season but we have to finish well.”
Former England captain David Beckham received the PFA’s Merit award for his contribution to the game during the ceremony at the Grosvenor Hotel in London on Sunday.
Former England women’s captain Kelly Smith – who became England’s first female professional footballer when she joined American side New Jersey in 1999 – landed the PFA Special Achievement award.