Essien nominated for UEFA awards

15 years ago

Ghana's Michael Essien has been included in the 25-man shortlist for this year's European Club Footballer of the Year awards.

The Black Stars player would also be vying for an individual award; the midfielder of the year, where he faces competition from Chelsea teammate Frank Lampard, Cesc Fabregas, Steven Gerrard, and Paul Scholes all based in the English premiership.

The list, announced on Friday by Uefa, is dominated by Premier League players with 17 from the top flight named out of the total 25.

The winner is voted for by the coaches of the 16 teams which reached the knock-out stages of last year's competition. They will cast their votes next Thursday at the Champions League group stage draw in Monaco.

There are also individual awards for goalkeeper, defender, midfielder and forward of the year.

The list of nominees, from which the overall winner will be selected, is:

Goalkeeper of the year: Manuel Almunia (Arsenal), Petr Cech (Chelsea), Manuel Neuer (FC Schalke 04), Jose Reina (Liverpool), Edwin van der Sar (Manchester United).

Defender of the year: Jamie Carragher (Liverpool), Rio Ferdinand (Manchester United), Carles Puyol (Barcelona), John Terry (Chelsea), Nemanja Vidic (Manchester United).

Midfielder of the year: Michael Essien (Chelsea), Cesc Fabregas (Arsenal), Steven Gerrard (Liverpool), Frank Lampard (Chelsea), Paul Scholes (Manchester United).

Forward of the year: Didier Drogba (Chelsea), Lionel Messi (Barcelona), Cristiano Ronaldo (Manchester United), Wayne Rooney (Manchester United), Fernando Torres (Liverpool).