Al Shamrani named Asia's best footballer

Sport360 staff 20:44 30/11/2014
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Call him a star: Nasser Al Shamrani has been named AFC Player of the Year despite being banned on the same day.

Al Hilal striker Nasser Al Shamrani has been controversially named AFC Player of the Year, the same day as being handed an eight-game ban for spitting and headbutting an opponent in the final of the Asian Champions League.

#360view: Is Al Shamrani the Luis Suarez of Asian football?

Al Hilal’s frontman pipped Qatari playmaker Khalfan Ibrahim and Al Ain centre-back Ismail Ahmed to the prize after scoring 10 goals in the AFC Champions League campaign this term.

The prize ceremony came just hours after the Deputy Chairman of the Asian Football Confederation’s disciplinary committee, Yemen’s Hamid Al Shaibani, revealed the striker would be suspended.

The report said the ban only occurs for AFC Champions League matches so he will be free to represent his country Saudi Arabia at the Asian Cup in January.

Al Shamrani was ecstatic with the accolade but he didn’t want to discuss his other antics.

“I’m proud of myself that I am the best player of the year. For anything else please talk to AFC,” the 31-year-old told the media through a translator.

Katrina Gorry was named women’s player of the year after hitting the net three times in Australia’s run to the Women’s Asian Cup final.

Tony Popovic was coach of the year and the Wanderers were best team after their feat in becoming Australia’s first ever Champions League winners and on their debut in the competition.

Palestine were named best national team for their feat in winning the AFC Challenge Cup, a victory which earned them a berth at next year’s Asian Cup in Australia.

Australia’s Crystal Palace midfielder Mile Jedinak won international player of the year, and best foreign player went to Al Ain’s Ghanaian striker Asamoah Gyan.

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