De Bruyne wins PFA Player of the Year award
Written by Taiwo Adediran on September 10, 2020
Kevin de Bruyne, Manchester City midfielder, has won the Professional Footballers’ Association (PFA) Player of the Year award for the 2019/2020 season.
The Belgian playmaker was announced winner on the association’s website on Tuesday, ahead of Virgil van Dijk, Saido Mane, Trent Alexander-Arnold, Jordan Henderson and Raheem Sterling.
De Bruyne credited Pep Guardiola, his coach, who handed him the licence to dictate City’s attack, for the award.
“Most of the time he just lets me be me, we speak often about the team but in a lot of senses he knows when he gives the orders of what the team has to do that I will listen,” the 29-year-old said.
“But then on the other side he gives me a lot of freedom; I don’t know why, that’s just the way it goes between us. He knows in one way I will always put the team first and then obviously if I can help myself I’m going to do that.
“But he knows that I want the team to win, and if the team wins I will gain from it. So I think in that sense he feels fine and he trusts me completely.
“It’s maybe strange that I’m the first one at City, seeing all the good players who played there before and who are still playing. But it’s nice to represent the club.”
De Bruyne becomes the first Manchester City player to win the award.
It is also the third consecutive season a player from a club that did not win the English Premier League title will be voted winner of the award.
De Bruyne contributed a record-equalling 20 assists and scored 13 goals in a season Man City finished second in the EPL, 18 points behind champions Liverpool.
Alexander-Arnold picked up the award for the PFA Young Player of the Year, beating England youngsters Tammy Abraham, Mason Greenwood, Mason Mount, Marcus Rashford and Bukayo Saka to the prize.
Chelsea Women’s Bethany England beat WSL top scorer Vivianne Miedema to the Women’s award, ahead of her title-winning team-mates Sophie Ingle, Guro Reiten and Ji So-Yun.
Manchester City’s Lauren Hemp collected the women’s young player prize, beating team-mates Chloe Kelly, Georgia Stanway and Ellie Roebuck, with Chelsea’s Erin Cuthbert and Manchester United’s Lauren James also shortlisted.
Manchester United’s Marcus Rashford received the PFA merit award for work undertaken to combat child poverty during lockdown.
Premier League team of the year: Nick Pope (Burnley), Trent Alexander-Arnold, Virgil Van Dijk (both Liverpool), Caglar Soyuncu (Leicester), Andrew Robertson (Liverpool), David Silva (Manchester City), Jordan Henderson (Liverpool), Kevin De Bruyne (Manchester City), Jamie Vardy (Leicester), Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (Arsenal), Sadio Mane (Liverpool).
Women’s Super League team of the year: Ann-Katrin Berger, Maren Mjelde (both Chelsea), Leah Williamson (Arsenal), Millie Bright, Magdalena Eriksson (both Chelsea), Caroline Weir (Man City), Kim Little (Arsenal), Ji So-yun, Beth England (both Chelsea), Vivianne Miedema (Arsenal), Chloe Kelly (Man City).
Championship team of the year: Brice Samba (Nottingham Forest), Luke Ayling, Ben White, Liam Cooper (all Leeds), Joe Bryan (Fulham), Eberechi Eze (QPR), Kalvin Phillips (Leeds), Romaine Sawyers (West Brom), Aleksandar Mitrovic (Fulham), Ollie Watkins, Said Benrahma (both Brentford).