England’s top flight is renowned for being crammed full of some of the most exciting talent in the world and this year has been no different. It has not been easy, but we have cut the huge list of candidates down to a shortlist of six players that have been on fire over the last 12 months.
Below are the nominations:
The Premier League’s most talented striker and, on his day, up there with the very best in the world. Aguero has been a frustrating figure at Manchester City due to his injury problems, but when he plays, City are a far better team, with the striker scoring 27 goals (at the time of writing) this year.
The English striker has gone from strength to strength in recent years, becoming one of the hottest properties in the Premier League. Tottenham’s talisman and goalscoring machine, the London side have seen just how vital the forward is as they struggled to score without him during a spell out with injury in the autumn. Kane has netted 21 goals this year and scooped the Premier League Golden Boot too.
Leicester had so many outstanding performers last season that N’Golo Kante, and unknown in the UK when he moved to the Premier League last summer, was somewhat forgotten. However, he was phenomenal for the Foxes in the second-half of their title winning season and he has taken his game to the next level with new club Chelsea – the all action midfielder has been one of the main reasons why the Blues are back in the title race. The Frenchman has only scored once and picked up two assists this year, which conveys that he is one of the best behind the scenes players around.
West Ham’s talisman and free-kick expert, Dimitri Payet has been a key man this year and one of the Premier League’s most exciting players. The French midfielder was a huge reason as to why the Hammers excelled last term, however, he has struggled this season along with his club. This should not diminish what was a stunning 12 months for the 29-year-old, where he has notched five goals and 14 assists, and with many of his goals coming in the form of truly sublime free-kicks.
It has been a blockbuster year for Mahrez, the sort Hollywood films are made of. The winger was incredible in Leicester’s title winning campaign, winning PFA Player’s Player of the Year and Fans’ Player of the Year. The second-half of his year has been more difficult, but he, like Payet, did more than enough in the earlier part of 2016 to warrant a nomination here. The Algerian has hit seven goals and five assists this year as he continues to show his quality.
Jamie Vardy was another part of the all conquering Leicester City side of earlier this year. The English forward notched 11 goals and five assists, and now holds the record for goals scored in consecutive matches (in 11 consecutive games). His blistering pace, aggressive style and clinical finishing make him a very complete striker and he was the one that fired the Foxes to one of the must surprising successes in footballing history.