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Virgil Van Dijk wins UEFA Men's Player of the Year

By Vincent Ashitey
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Virgil Van Dijk has been crowned UEFA Men's Player of the Year in the season under review following his heroics for club and country.

He has been a rock-solid purchase for the Anfield club since his £75m move from Southampton in January 2018.

The Netherlands international becomes the first Dutch player in history to win UEFA Men's Player of the Year and the second player to have ended Ronaldo and Messi's dominance of the award following Luka Modric's triumph last year.

'First of all, I need to thank all my team-mates. Without all of them, I wouldn't have achieved what I have done over the past year.

'It has been a long road but it's part of my journey and who I am. I am not a player who is 18 years old and had that path straight away. I had to work hard and I am very proud of that. It's all credit to everyone who has helped me along the way.

'I looked up as a young player to Ronaldinho because he had so much joy when playing, it was such a great feeling to watch him play.

'But I think all the people who have helped me along the way, it has been a pleasure.'

Since the inception of the Uefa Men's Player of the Year award in 2011, Ronaldo has won it three times (2014, 2016, 2017), while Messi has won it twice (2011 and 2015).

The 28-year-old last season walked away with the Premier League player of the year and Professional Footballers' Men's player of the year as well as aiding Jurgen Klopp's team to clinch the UEFA Champions League and the Super Cup.

The full list of award winners below

UEFA Men’s Player of the Year

Virgil van Dijk, Liverpool

UEFA Women’s Player of the Year

Lucy Bronze, Lyon

Champions League Goalkeeper of the Season

Alisson Becker, Liverpool

Champions League Defender of the Season

Virgil Van Dijk, Liverpool

Champions League Midfielder of the Season

Frenkie de Jong, Ajax (currently at Barcelona)

Champions League Forward of the Season

Lionel Messi, Barcelona