Benzema named in star trio for UEFA player award

Getty Images

The trio is joined by bosses Carlo Ancelotti and Pep Guardiola, plus Liverpool's Jurgen Klopp, on the three-man shortlist for the UEFA Men's Coach of the Year Award.

Ahead of this week's Ballon d'Or nominations, France forward Benzema has further enshrined his frontrunner status, after firing Madrid to a continental double last term in LaLiga and the UEFA Champions League.

But there is no room for any player from Liverpool, the side that Ancelotti's men vanquished in last season's final in Paris.

Five Reds stars – Mohamed Salah, Virgil van Dijk, Trent Alexander-Arnold and Fabinho, plus the departed Sadio Mane – made the 15-man longlist, but none made the final cut for the eventual nominations.

Other players included Robert Lewandowski and Luka Modric, who came fourth and fifth respectively, while Paris Saint-Germain forward Kylian Mbappe came eighth, one spot ahead of Madrid forward Vinicius Junior.

Benzema is feted for his superb efforts in helping Madrid bounce back to glory under Ancelotti, with 44 goals in 46 games across all competitions, while Courtois is recognised for his superb feats between the posts.

De Bruyne meanwhile helped City and Guardiola to another Premier League crown, while Klopp steered Liverpool to two domestic trophies, plus a second-place league finish and the UEFA Champions League final.

The winners will be announced at the ceremony for the 2022-2023 UEFA Champions League group stage draw in Istanbul on 25 August.


>