UEFA’s Snub Leaves Real Madrid Supporters Angry

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UEFA's Oversight Leaves Real Madrid Supporters Angry

Soccer Football - Real Madrid celebrate winning the Champions League Final with an open top bus parade - Madrid, Spain - May 29, 2022 Real Madrid fans are seen ahead of the bus parade REUTERS/Marcelo Del Pozo

Real Madrid supporters, along with those closely associated with the club, find themselves perplexed once again as Vinicius Junior has been omitted from the elite list of top 10 contenders for a coveted individual accolade.

In a recent announcement, UEFA unveiled the nominees for the prestigious Men’s Player of the Year award. The lineup featured Erling Haaland, Kevin de Bruyne, and Lionel Messi as the frontrunners in that order. The awaited victor will be unveiled during the Champions League draw scheduled for the 31st of August.

The list, progressing subsequently, incorporated Ilkay Gundogan, Rodri, Kylian Mbappe, Luka Modric, Marcelo Brozovic, Declan Rice, Alexis Mac Allister, and Jesus Navas. Notably, a significant portion of the top five contenders emerged from Manchester City, the triumphant team of the Champions League.

Pep Guardiola is anticipated to secure the Manager of the Year accolade, facing competition from Simone Inzaghi and Luciano Spalletti. Among the top 10, the ranks featured Spanish figures Mikel Arteta (5th) and Jose Luis Mendilibar (7th).

The absence of Vinicius has ignited a sense of frustration among Madridistas. The Brazilian talent recorded an impressive tally of 10 goals and 10 assists in 33 La Liga fixtures in the preceding season. Yet, his pivotal role during Real Madrid’s journey to the Champions League semi-finals was even more noteworthy. Notching up 4 goals and delivering 7 assists, Vinicius emerged as the linchpin of Real Madrid’s offensive maneuvers. His remarkable goal against Manchester City remained one of the standout moments of the tournament.

It’s worth noting that Vinicius had previously been excluded from the FIFA Best awards held in February. These awards were designed to acknowledge the pinnacle of performance during the calendar year 2022, a time when he was undoubtedly among the globe’s premier talents.

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The selection process for the award involves votes from managers of clubs that reached the group stages of the Champions League, Europa League, and Conference League, national team managers affiliated with UEFA, and a distinguished panel of journalists. The initial shortlist itself was meticulously curated by a technical team sanctioned by UEFA.

Although Vinicius has managed to persuade the majority of Spain that he ranks among the world’s elite players, it’s evident that he has yet to make a similar impression within the wider UEFA circle. The forthcoming season promises another opportunity for him to continue his ascent, as he is poised to spearhead Real Madrid’s offensive charge once more.

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