UEFA Best Player in Europe Award nominees announced, but who deserves the title?

Messi, suarez, ronaldo.jpg
Written by Ben Park

The final three nominees have been announced for the 2014/15 UEFA Best Player in Europe Award and they’re not really surprising to be honest. Ballon D’Or winner Cristiano Ronaldo is joined by two of Barcelona’s deadly front three, Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez, in a very hotly anticipated contest.

It’s hard to argue with the decision really. Other than out and out club fans, for example several Manchester City fans continuing to argue Vincent Kompany is the best in the world, many would agree that these three are by far and away the best three players in Europe and possibly the world. All three had sensational seasons in the 2014/15 season but for me one stands out above the rest.

No one can deny the talents of the Barcelona pair Messi and Suarez, they are both fantastic to watch. I was watching the UEFA Super Cup the other night, where Barcelona beat Sevilla 5-4 in extra time, and at times I genuinely found myself catching flies with my mouth when Messi had the ball at his feet. The man really is a magician with the ball, and when he’s in the mood, he’s honestly unplayable. Similarly with Suarez, he is one of the best finishers on the planet and trust me that is not easy to say as a Manchester United fan. Both players were part of the deadly trio alongside Neymar that contributed an incredible 122 goals in the 2014/15 la liga season, which is an absolutely phenomenal stat, but for me Cristiano Ronaldo’s 2014/15 season stands out like no other.

Cristiano Ronaldo’s phenomenal season

When Ronaldo left Manchester United in 2009, still remember exactly where I was when I heard the news by the way, it was a dark day for all united fans. He was but when he left, although we were all upset, we knew he was going to go on to achieve a legendary status at Madrid having already achieved it with United. He was different to all the other players that had left, he was different to Beckham, different to Van Nistelrooy, all phenomenal players, but he’s just special.

And that is exactly what Ronaldo’s season was last year. Special. Although I admit I sound like a complete fan girl, and for what reason? The goals and the way they came.

The man they call CR7 scored 61 goals in one season. 61 goals. It’s absolutely unheard of! 48 of which came in La Liga which gave Ronaldo. 9 of which came in his final 3 games, where he scored 3 hat tricks. Some teams don’t even score that in the season and all these goals came from one just man, a man who apparently had a mid-season ‘dip in form’ according to some. Insanity. Just to add to these insane stats, he also contributed 22 assists and is league goal total was 5 more than Messi’s ‘measly’ 43 goals.

With this incredible tally, Ronaldo overtook Real Madrid and Argentine legend Alfredo Di Stefano in the list when he scored his 309th and 310th goals for the club. Ronaldo now only sits behind Raul in the all-time scoring charts, with 310 goals coming in just 299 games, his stats for the club truly are ludicrous.

Although a case can undoubtedly be argued for all three players winning the title, for me Ronaldo had a fantastic season last season and fully deserves to be named UEFA Best Player in Europe. Here’s hoping for another incredible season!