As you may know if you’ve been following any sort of Spanish newspaper this week – there has been an outcry over the results of the LFP Awards presented on Monday night. The event honoured the best players in the 2013-14 La Liga season.
With the exception of Simeone picking up the LFP Coach of the Year, Atlético didn’t manage any other awards, despite picking up their tenth league title on the last day of the season away to Barcelona.
Here at AtleticoFans, we’re delighted to bring you exclusive access to how the awards ceremony should have unfolded.
Goalkeeper of the Year – Thibaut Courtois (Atlético de Madrid)
Runner-up: Gabi (Atlético de Madrid)
In his third and final season on loan at Atleti, Courtois had a year he will never forget. Picking up the Zamora trophy with the lowest goals-to-game ratio (0.65 per game) and only 24 goals conceded (the fewest in the league) topped off a spectacular season for the Belgian.
It was a tight-race, but Courtois managed to just edge out Gabi for La Liga’s best goalkeeper, after the latter’s appearance in the goalkeeper kit against Almeria. (He really pulled it off – despite his attempt at saving the penalty.)
Defender of the Year – Miranda (Atlético de Madrid)
Runner-up: Godin (Atlético de Madrid)
Joao Miranda helped Thibaut Courtois to 18 clean sheets last season. You want more stats? He made 259 tackles. He made 415 clearances. 155 of those were made with his glorious, goalscoring head.
Miranda’s partner in crime, Diego Godín is the runner up on our list. Assisting Miranda in the defensive duties required by Diego Pablo Simeone, Godín also scored one of the most important and beautiful goals in Atlético history. His header at the Camp Nou will be remembered for years to come. Maybe Diego should think about legally changing his last name to God-in.
Midfielder of the Year – Gabi (Atlético de Madrid)
Runner-up: Diego Simeone (Atlético de Madrid)
The heart and soul of the Atlético midfield is none other than the captain, Gabi. He may not have long luscious locks like Andrea Pirlo or Luka Modric, but he makes up for that with his non-stop playing style. His constant pressing of the ball, deadly recoveries, superhuman stamina, and delicious passes make him the midfielder of the season. His goal scored against Real Madrid at the Calderón is one of the beauties of the season.
Although he did not feature in any official games, Diego Simeone is the runner up for best midfielder of the year. Because let’s face it – there’s no better midfielder across the whole of La Liga. Even at 44, he seems in better shape than the guy who scored twice against us at the weekend.
Attacking Midfielder of the Year – Koke (Atlético de Madrid)
Runner-up: Raul Garcia (Atlético de Madrid)
Koke, Spain’s brightest star for the future. The player that has already replaced Xavi in the heart of a Spanish midfield that was tagged as the best in the world over the last decade.
Our youngster finished the season with 13 – yes 13 – assists in the league, scoring six goals in the process. It was an outrageous season from the 22-year-old.
The only player that got anywhere close to pipping Koke to the prize was his fellow Spaniard, the real Raul, Raul Garcia. RG8 managed to score nine goals to aid Atleti’s pursuit of the Championship – albeit playing further forward at times alongside Diego Costa.
Forward of the Year – Diego Costa (Atlético de Madrid)
Runner-up: David Villa (Atlético de Madrid)
He may no longer be with us, but The Beast of the Manzanares notched up 27 goals in just 35 league appearances, his best ever season in what was his last for Atlético. It’s no wonder Chelsea came calling (although how early they came is still up for debate).
David Villa was the runner up, after scoring some very important goals in his single season at Atlético. Our favourite was the volley against his former club, and subsequent celebration (and yes, we know this was in the Super Cup, but who really cares?)
Breakthrough Player of the Year – Saul Niguez (Rayo Vallecano)
Runner-up: Arthur Guisasola (AtleticoFans.com)
Saúl Ñiguez just edged out AtleticoFans writer, Arthur Guisasola for Breakthrough Player of the Year. The fact that Arthur doesn’t play football is the main reason that Saúl took home the trophy. There’s not another young man alive who can match the abilities of Atlético’s youngster.
Last season at Rayo, Saúl was implemented in a wide-array of positions, in which he showed off how versatile he can be. Rayo coach Paco Jemez had nothing but praise for the young starlet.
“He has the technical ability to be able to play in whatever position on the pitch.”
It is still unclear if Jémez was talking about Saúl or Arthur.
And that’s it! We hope you enjoyed our Awards Ceremony – and we hope you agree with the selections!
DISCLAIMER: If the LFP can make it up – so can we.