PFA player of the year – The REAL nominations

The recently announced shortlist for the Professional Footballers’ Association Player of the year award has thrown up a few surprises including the omissions of Capital One Cup winner Michu and Everton left back Leighton Baines.

The six man shortlist includes Michael Carrick, Gareth Bale, Robin van Persie, Luis Suarez, Eden Hazard and Juan Mata. Bale won the main award in 2011, aged 21, while van Persie won last year. However, the shortlist has come under real scrutiny as to why players such as Baines and Michu haven’t made the list.

Michu has scored 21 goals in 38 games in his first season in English football – including 17 in the Premier League whilst Baines has enjoyed his best ever Premier League campaign. Not many people will argue with the inclusion of van Persie, Bale or Suarez. However, I find it hard to believe that Eden Hazard has performed at a higher standard this season than both Baines and Michu.

Bale is favourite to get the nod over RVP and Suarez but I expect that it will be a close call. I’m sure Suarez would have had more of a shot if his season wasn’t surrounded by controversy, and whilst it isn’t a popularity contest, this will be the reason he will more than likely miss out on the award. Van Persie has been the difference between Manchester United and Manchester City this season. He picked up where he left off last season and if the award went his way then there shouldn’t be too many complaints.

The shortlist for the Young Player of the Year award also threw up a few surprises. I don’t see the reasoning behind the inclusions of Danny Welbeck and Jack Wilshere and it seems to me as though the FA shortlisted them because they’re English and play for Manchester United and Arsenal respectively. Bale, Hazard, Christian Benteke and Romelu Lukaku are also up for the award. Personally I would like to see the award go to either Benteke or Lukaku as the two young Belgian internationals have both had fantastic seasons scoring some important goals for their clubs.

Southampton’s Luke Shaw, Manchester City’s Matija Nastasic and Wigan’s James McCarthy can all feel aggrieved not to have been shortlisted.

Whilst I realise that football is a game of opinions, I know I’m not alone when I say I’m disappointed at some of the shortlisted players. Spare a thought for the absence of defenders and goalkeepers though.

Andrew Floyd