With the end of the 2016/17 Premier League season less than 24 hours away, three of Rousing the Kop’s columnists thought it an opportune time to address who has been most influential for Liverpool this season.
Liverpool Football Club hosted their official awards ceremony gala dinner last Tuesday and Sadio Mané, Trent Alexander-Arnold and Emre Can were among the players to be recognised for their respective contributions this season.
The 2016/17 season has been one of mixed emotions for supporters. The premature title challenge led to fans having heightened ambitions of what this squad is capable of and the result was disappointment when January rolled in to crush these dreams.
All the same, this season has been one to savour as it is just the second time in eight years that Liverpool will finish in the Champions League if Middlesbrough is defeated at Anfield later today.
There have been several players that have stood out above the others, but there is a certain amount of debate as to who has been better and so three of Rousing the Kop’s columnists took it upon themselves to find out who they thought were the best of the bunch.
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Michael Baddeley’s end of season awards are…
Player of the Season – This one is hard. There are at least four players who could win it! But I think it’s got to be Sadio! I can’t remember the last time the lad had a bad game for us. Let’s not forget that this is also his first season at the club and he’s been nothing short of phenomenal for the Reds.
Young Player of the Season – You won’t be surprised with this one at all, I’m going with Trent Alexander-Arnold. If you watched his highlights back then you wouldn’t think that this is his breakthrough season at all. He’s calm on the ball, has the eye to pick a good pass and is capable at both attacking and defending. I’ll be surprised if he isn’t a first team starter by the end of next season!
Goal of the Season – Easy – Emre Can at Watford away! The technique is world class. The ball is coming at him yet he still manages to turn his body, get up and guide it to the far corner. If Messi had done it you’d never hear the end of it!
Signing of the Season – I know I said Mané was player of the season, but I am going to say Jöel Matip is the signing of the season. You would pay £30 million for someone of his talent, so to get him on a freebie is mind-blowing. He’s had a solid first season and will definitely be a key player in our defence for years to come.
What are Alex Rogers’ end of season awards?
Player of the Season – With Player of the Season, many people would think of Mané straight away and they have every right to think that, but for me, I feel the little Brazilian Coutinho has been just as important. They’ve both been phenomenal but I feel Coutinho showed he offers more to the team than just an attacking outlet.
Young Player of the Season – Again, for Young Player of the Season, no one would argue if you said Trent-Arnold should deserve it and he does. In fact, he won the official award the other day for Liverpool. But young Ben Woodburn has been a real joy to watch every time I’ve seen him play. Also becoming Liverpool’s youngest ever goal scorer since Michael Owen is a fantastic feat.
Goal of the Season – Goal of the season was the easiest choice for me. Despite the number of incredible goals we scored this season, not many come close to Can’s amazing acrobatic effort against Watford. That was a thing of beauty, a true masterpiece, the Mona Lisa of goals. I cried when I saw it, so what?
Signing of the Season – Liverpool were blessed with a couple of good signings this season, most of whom have become fan favourites already, but it would be a crime to say Mané wasn’t the Signing of the Season for us. You could argue he was the best signing for any club this year in the Premier league, he’s been that good.
Who does Damon Savenelli think deserves recognition?
Player of the Season – Do not get me wrong, Sadio Mané had a great season, but Coutinho is just on another level. 12 goals and seven assists mean the Brazilian has been directly involved in 19 goals this season. More than any other Liverpool player. It’s not just the numbers. Coutinho is basically the mastermind behind Liverpool’s attack. He pulls all the strings. His long shot and free kick ability is also a deadly weapon that adds to our attack.
Young Player of the Season – While Trent Alexander-Arnold had a noteworthy season, I have gone with Ben Woodburn. Barely seventeen, and Woodburn became Liverpool’s youngest ever goalscorer back in November. He also was called up to the Welsh National Team for the first time in his young career. To top it all off, the attacker is pretty much a regular on the Liverpool bench. Exciting things ahead for Woodburn.
Goal of the Season – There were some brilliant goals this season, so this one was a toughie. I have picked Mané’s goal against Arsenal in the opening game of the season. That goal essentially encapsulated everything that you want to see in a modern day attacker. Speed, power, everything. More on that in a bit. The winger basically turned nothing into something and scored the best individual goal that I have seen all season.
Signing of the Season – No surprise here. We all saw what happened to our attack when Mané left in January. Absolute mayhem. Like I said above, Mané is the perfect attacker. Strong, fast, and a decent finisher. He offers something that our other attackers can not. Sheer pace. The Senegalese scored some extremely important goals for us and really added a different element to our attack. He was exactly what our attack has been crying out for and I cannot wait to watch him play again next season.
What does Twitter think?
We also asked the followers of Rousing the Kop who they thought should win the player awards and the results are not surprising whatsoever!
For Player of the Season, 66% of our fans said that they thought Mané should get the honour, with 22% saying Coutinho. Adam Lallana and Gini Wijnaldum got 9% and 4% respectively.
The Young Player of the Season award saw 77% give it to Trent-Arnold and only 12% to Ben Woodburn. The also very talented Harry Wilson and Rhian Brewster got 8% and 3% respectively.
Goal of the Season was given to Can against Watford away with 75% and Henderson’s goal against Chelsea away was second with 11%. Mané vs Arsenal away got 10% while Firmino’s strike against stoke away only got 4%.
Finally, Mané won a landslide victory for Signing of the Season with a staggering 92% of votes! Matip and Wijnaldum both came joint second with 4% each.