Published On: Mon, Apr 29th, 2019

Raheem Sterling beats Liverpool’s Virgil van Dijk to FWA footballer of the year | Football | Sport

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Van Dijk was named best player this season by the PFA on Sunday evening, but Sterling scooped the Football Writers’ Association award on Monday.

It comes with Liverpool and Manchester City still battling at the top of the Premier League.

There is just one point between the two contenders, with City having gone back to the summit with a 1-0 win at Burnley.

Sterling was relatively quiet in that match but has had a stellar season, netting 17 Premier League goals.

Sterling becomes the first Manchester City winner of the award having earned 62 per cent of the vote.

He was more than 100 votes clear of Van Dijk while Sergio Aguero was third.

“Raheem Sterling is a player of style and a man of substance,” FWA chair Carrie Brown said.

“More than 70 years ago Charles Buchan, one of the founding fathers of the Footballer Writers’ Association, suggested there be an award presented to the player who by “precept and example” is considered the Footballer of the Year.

“Raheem Sterling is an exemplar of the talent and values our founding fathers sought to reward when they established the FWA in 1947.

“On the pitch, Raheem has evolved into one of the most dangerous forwards in the world.

“A player long admired for his tactical intelligence, link-up play and quick feet has now added a devastating finish to his game.

“The Manchester City forward’s Champions League opener against Tottenham at the Etihad Stadium drew comparisons with Lionel Messi’s goal against Manchester United.

“Are we approaching a time where Barcelona’s maestro will be forced to cast a watchful glance over his dropped shoulder at the rising star of Sterling?

“Raheem didn’t set out to be a leader, but he is setting examples in society and in the game which the world is following with interest.”

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