Sadio Mane and Cristiano Ronaldo are among the notable absentees from the Premier League’s Player of the Season shortlist – but Mohamed Salah, Kevin De Bruyne and Trent Alexander-Arnold have all been included.
Bukayo Saka, James Ward-Prowse, Joao Cancelo, Son Heung-min and Jarrod Bowen have also been nominated for the prize.
Fans have until 6pm BST on Monday to vote for their favourite. These will be combined with those of the 20 club captains and a panel of football experts to decide the winner.
Mane and Ronaldo are not in contention for the award despite enjoying superb seasons for Liverpool and Manchester United, respectively.
The Liverpool star has scored 15 goals in 33 league appearances as the Anfield club bid for an unprecedented quadruple.
Sadio Mane has failed to make the eight-person shortlist for the Player of the Season award
Cristiano Ronaldo is another high-profile absentee from the list revealed by the Premier League
Fans will have until Monday to cast their vote for their 2021-22 player of the season
Ronaldo has been a shining light in United’s dismal season with 18 goals in 30 league matches, while he has also twice been named as the Premier League’s player of the month.
De Bruyne and Salah will be hoping to win the award for the second time. The Manchester City midfielder scooped the prize two years ago, while the Liverpool forward claimed the honour in 2018.
The formidable Belgian has been an integral part of Pep Guardiola’s side, who are seeking a fourth Premier League title in five years.
Ronaldo’s omission comes despite the Portuguese star’s two player of the month awards
De Bruyne has 15 goals – four of which came in the 5-1 thrashing of Wolves on Wednesday – and seven assists for City in the league this season.
He is aiming to become only the fourth player to win the award more than once, a list that includes Ronaldo, Nemanja Vidic and Thierry Henry.
Salah leads the race for the golden boot with 22 goals in 34 appearances and has racked up a league high of 13 assists.
Liverpool team-mates Mohamed Salah and Trent Alexander-Arnold have been nominated
His Liverpool team-mate Alexander-Arnold has made the shortlist after another fantastic campaign for Jurgen Klopp’s men. The 23-year-old has 12 assists and two goals in the league with two games of the season remaining.
Son is second behind Salah on the goalscoring charts having found the net on 22 occasions for Spurs, who are chasing a top-four finish.
The South Korean is hoping to become the first Tottenham player to land the yearly award since Gareth Bale achieved the feat in 2013.
Jarrod Bowen has caught the eye with his superb performances for West Ham this season
PLAYER OF THE YEAR SHORTLIST
Trent Alexander-Arnold – Liverpool
Jarrod Bowen – West Ham United
Joao Cancelo – Manchester City
Kevin de Bruyne – Manchester City
Bukayo Saka – Arsenal
Mohamed Salah – Liverpool
Son Heung-min – Tottenham Hotspur
James Ward-Prowse – Southampton
Bowen has enjoyed a standout campaign for West Ham, who reached the semi-finals of the Europa League, and his league form has attracted the attention of several top clubs.
The 25-year-old has been a mainstay of David Moyes’ team and is only the second West Ham player to reach double figures for both goals and assists in a Premier League season, scoring 10 and setting up 10 to emulate Paolo Di Canio.
Saka has led the charge for Mikel Arteta’s Arsenal as they target a place in the Champions League, with the young English talent amassing 11 goals and six assists.
Saints captain James Ward-Prowse has caught the eye with his performances – and not just for his trademark set-piece ability. Four of his nine goals have come from direct free-kicks, leading Guardiola to describe him as one of the best takers he had ever seen.
Completing the shortlist is Cancelo, the marauding right-back who has played the most minutes of any of their outfield players.
The Portuguese has completed the most passes in the division, scoring or assisting eight goals.
Set-piece specialist James Ward-Prowse has been the standout performer for Southampton
Fans on social media questioned the omission of Ronaldo, with one Twitter user, Arup Chatterjee, describing the shortlist as a ‘joke’.
‘Where is Ronaldo, Mane, De Gea?’ they added.
Joe Campbell said: ‘Ronaldo must play darts does he lads?’, while Michael Hawthorne described the decision to include Alexander-Arnold and Saka over Bernardo Silva as ‘ridiculous’.
‘Not like ronnie is the third top scorer in the league, 2 potms age 37,’ wrote BERBS.
Mason Mount’s exclusion was also a common theme on Twitter. ‘Not quite sure how Mount hasn’t made the list,’ said This is Football Heritage.
Fans on social media questioned some of the omissions from the Premier League’s list