Manchester City have completed a double swoop in the Football Writers’ Association awards with Raheem Sterling and Nikita Parris being named Footballers of the Year. Sterling won 62% of the vote, beating Virgil van Dijk by more than 100 votes, while Parris narrowly edged out Vivianne Miedema by a single vote in the second stage.
Newly-elected FWA Chair Carrie Brown said: “Raheem Sterling is a player of style and a man of substance. 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. To have been voted the 2019 Footballer of the Year by our members, and with such an overwhelming majority, clearly acknowledges the contribution from a player over one season, but it also recognises the huge impact of Raheem’s courage to challenge preconceptions and fight racism, which will leave a legacy not just for future generations in football but society as a whole.”
Sterling has scored 17 goals and made 10 assists in 32 Premier League appearances for Man City men this season. He’s comfortably in the top-10 for goals and assists and drew widespread praise for handing in-game racial abuse. Parris has scored 19 goals in 19 WSL 1 appearances for Man City women, has won the Continental Cup and could win the Women’s FA Cup in May.
Parris is the FAWSL’s all-time record goalscorer and impressed for England when the Lionesses won the She Believes Cup triumph earlier in the year. The Man City forward has also been exemplary off the pitch, helping the City of Liverpool College set up the NP17 Football Academy which provides sports qualification to students.
Harry Kane (Tottenham), Eden Hazard (Chelsea), Alexandre Lacazette (Arsenal), Bernardo Silva and David Silva (Manchester City) were the other men to receive votes while Steph Houghton (Manchester City), Beth Mead (Arsenal), Danielle van de Donk (Arsenal), Leah Williamson (Arsenal), Magdalena Ericsson (Chelsea), Erin Cuthbert (Chelsea), Karen Carney (Chelsea), Fran Kirby (Chelsea), Georgia Stanway (Man City), Lucy Bronze (Lyon) and Toni Duggan (Barcelona) were the other women.