Will Grigg gets as many votes as Paul Pogba in Uefa best player award

Northern Ireland striker ranked ahead of Bundesliga top scorer Aubameyang

 Will Grigg received as many votes as Paul Pogba in Uefa’s Best Player in Europe Award. Photograph: Getty

Will Grigg received as many votes as Paul Pogba in Uefa’s Best Player in Europe Award. Photograph: Getty

 

Northern Ireland’s Will Grigg was one of 37 players nominated for Uefa’s Best Player in Europe Award, with the Wigan striker receiving as many votes as Manchester United target Paul Pogba and more than Bundesliga top scorer Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.

Grigg, who did not play a single minute for his country at Euro 2016 became one of the names of the tournament after the 90s song Freed From Desire was adapted in his honour. Will Grigg’s On Fire reached No6 in the official iTunes chart.

However, that and the 24-year-old’s 25 goals for Wigan in League One was not quite enough to see him included on the 10-man shortlist for the prize, which is voted for by journalists from each of Uefa’s 55 member associations.

Second Captains

Gareth Bale is one of four players from European champions Real Madrid to make the cut, along with Cristiano Ronaldo, Pepe and Toni Kroos. Italy goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon, Antoine Griezmann of Atlético Madrid and France, Barcelona’s Lionel Messi and Luis Suárez are joined by Thomas Müller and Manuel Neuer of Bayern Munich on the list, which features no players from the Premier League.

Leicester duo Riyad Mahrez and Jamie Vardy just missed out, with West Ham’s Dimitro Payet in 13th position.

The list will be whittled down to three players at the start of August, with Uefa’s jury to decide on the eventual winner during the Champions League group stage draw in Monaco on 25 August.

Last year’s winner Messi will be looking to collect his third award after claiming the inaugural prize in 2011.

(Guardian service)

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