Real Madrid and Portugal forward Cristiano Ronaldo has lifted the UEFA Best Player in Europe Award for a second time.
Cristiano Ronaldo’s 2016 has been phenomenal. The soccer superstar won two trophies, one with his club and one with country, and they were the biggest. In May, he took home the Champions League crown with Real Madrid before winning Euro 2016 with Portugal this summer. Could it get any better? It just did.
Ronaldo, voted by 55 European sports journalists, won the Best Player in Europe award for 2015-16 on Thursday during the Champions League group stage draw in Monaco, defeating club teammate Gareth Bale and Atletico Madrid’s Antoine Griezmann.
Ronaldo had 35 league goals and 16 Champions League goals last campaign, adding three at Euro 2016. He was the clear-cut favorite entering the day. Bale had 19 goals and 10 assists for Real Madrid, and Griezmann had 22 league goals for Atletico Madrid, seven in the Champions League and six goals at Euro 2016. Bale did get the Champions League trophy as well. Ronaldo and his club and country beat Griezmann in both the UCL final and the Euro final this summer.
This is the second time Ronaldo was won the award, winning it for the first time in 2013-14. Lionel Messi of Barcelona won it last year but was not a finalist this year.
Speaking after receiving the award,Ronaldo said…
“It’s a great honour. My team-mates are the key – they are the key every year. I work hard myself but without their help this would not be possible. Thanks to my team-mates from Real Madrid and Portugal. [Winning EURO] was different because I’ve won the Champions League three times now. To win something with Portugal was the highlight of my career.”