Manchester City defender Ruben Dias has been named as the Football Writer’s Player if the Year. The 24 year old centre back has been in inspired form this season since signing from Benfica for £65m last summer.
Dias has shored up the City defence and established a formidable partnership with the rejuvenated John Stones, as City took the Premier League title, League Cup and have a golden opportunity of being crowned Champions of Europe for the first time when they face Chelsea on Portugal next Saturday.
“It is a huge privilege. Obviously, I could not have done it without the success of the team,” Dias said. “I think me receiving this prize is the major example of how our team works, the way we build our game.
“It reflects all the togetherness we have on the pitch, how we perform and the spirit that is in the team and with these players.”
Dias becomes only the third person to win the award in his debut season and also becomes the first defender to take the crown since Liverpool’s Steve Nicol won the award in 1989.
The defender has been outstanding in City’s surge to Premier League and Champions League glory, often seen throwing himself in front of anything that comes his way, and the award is just reward for an outstanding season.