Dutch international Virgil van Dijk was crowned the Union European Football Association (UEFA) player of the year for the 2018-2019 season.
Van Dijk, the heart of Liverpool’s defense, beat his rivals in the final list of candidates for the award: Lionel Messi (Barcelona striker) and Cristiano Ronaldo (star of Juventus’s Italian attack).
He became the first defender to be awarded the award in its history from 2011 to the present, and the sixth to be crowned Ronaldo three times before. Messi also won it twice, and the prize went once to Spain’s Andres Iniesta, Frenchman Franck Ribery, and Croatian Luka Modric.
Sixth player to be crowned with the award
Van Dijk played a prominent role in Liverpool’s Champions League win last season and won the Premier League title last season.
Liverpool defender Virgil van Dijk has joined the winners of the UEFA Football Club award for the best player on the old continent.
Van was crowned the 2018-19 season winner on Thursday, becoming the sixth player in the golden record.
The golden record of the award since its inception so far:
2011: Lionel Messi (Barcelona)
2012: Andres Iniesta (Barcelona)
2013: Franck Ribery (Bayern Munich)
2014: Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid)
– 2015: Messi (Barcelona)
2016: Ronaldo (Real Madrid)
2017: Ronaldo (Real Madrid)
2018: Luka Modric (Real Madrid)
2019: Van Dijk (Liverpool)
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