It’s awards night today!! The PFA Player of the Year and PFA Young Player of the Year will be announced tonight and so Into The Top Corner has a look at the nominees for both awards.
Following his £38 million switch from Atletico Madrid last summer, the Argentine did not take long to adapt to his new surroundings, scoring twice on his Premier League debut against Swansea City before grabbing his first hat-trick in English football just two games later against Wigan. Much like team-mate David Silva, the 23-year-old may not have been as prolific throughout the winter months, but has returned to form of late, scoring seven goals in his last five games.
The current holder of the PFA Player of the Year award has already surpassed his return of seven goals from last season with 10 in the current campaign, as well as contributing eight assists in a Tottenham side which briefly threatened to challenge for the title. While Spurs have gone off the boil dramatically in recent weeks, the Welshman has continued to threaten, and if the north London club do fail to qualify for the Champions League, the 22-year-old will be top of the list of summer targets for a host of Europe’s elite.
The 21-year-old has firmly established his place in Tottenham’s starting XI this season with a series of impressive performances at right-back, with his overlapping runs from deep proving a key weapon in his side’s attacking style. The ex-Sheffield United man’s form even forced Vedran Corluka to move to pastures new in search of first-team football, while Walker has also made the step up to the England senior set-up with appearances in friendlies against Sweden and Spain back in November.
Having made just 13 league appearances this season, with eight of those coming as a substitute, the 18-year-old is somewhat of a surprise inclusion in this year’s PFA nominations but has nonetheless looked impressive whenever he has featured for Arsenal. The wideman’s promising displays have often led to calls for him to replace fellow former Southampton man Theo Walcott in the Gunners starting XI, with Oxlade-Chamberlain also opening his league account with a double in February’s 7-1 rout of Blackburn.
The 22-year-old has managed to transfer his goalscoring exploits from last year’s loan spell at Bolton Wanderers back to parent club Chelsea this season, despite being deployed in a wide position which the striker has regularly noted his displeasure at. Although he has not featured in his favoured role, Sturridge is the only Chelsea forward to reach double figures in the Premier League this season, and is also likely to be handed the chance to impress on the international stage for England at Euro 2012 this summer
Also benefitting from a loan spell, Welbeck has already bettered the six goals he scored for Sunderland last year with eight in the current campaign, with the 21-year-old keeping established forwards Javier Hernandez and Dimitar Berbatov out of the side. The striker’s touch may be found wanting at times, but his fantastic movement has allowed him to form a potentially devastating partnership with the likes of Wayne Rooney and Antonio Valencia at Old Trafford as the Red Devils remain on course for their 20th Premier League title.