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24th Apr 2016

PFA Player and Young Player of the Year announced as Leicester and Spurs get hard-earned props

Well deserved

Darragh Murphy

You’d have gotten decent odds last August on these two being recognised by the PFA by the end of the season.

Many had expected Leicester to be brawling it out at the foot of the table by May but Claudio Ranieri has conjured up some magic in the East Midlands.

Spurs were expected to impress in Mauricio Pochettino’s second season in charge but the North London side still exceeded expectations as they find themselves scrapping with the Foxes at the top of the table with a mere handful of games remaining.

The Premier League title is all but statistically guaranteed to go to either Leicester or Spurs in the shattering of the triopoly enjoyed by Manchester City, Chelsea and Manchester United over the past decade.

And their respective underdog stories have now been recognised by the Professional Footballers’ Association who have voted Leicester’s Riyad Mahrez as Player of the Year and Spurs’ Dele Alli as Young Player of the Year.

Leicester City v Tottenham Hotspur - Premier League

Mahrez was favourite to receive the POTY award and rightly so, with his 17 goals and 11 assists in the league this season.

The Algeria international has been the creative collaborator behind Jamie Vardy’s finishing ability and it’s undeniable that Leicester wouldn’t be where they are without Mahrez’s contributions.

Dele Alli, meanwhile, became the fourth Spurs player in five years to claim the Young Player of the Year award, following in the footsteps of Harry Kane, Gareth Bale and Kyle Walker to be pegged for big things.

Tottenham Hotspur v Manchester United - Premier League

Alli has come from relative obscurity this season to score 10 goals and provide 12 assists in the Premier League, earning him comparisons with the great Paul Gascoigne.

Whoever you support, it’s impossible to deny that these two winners are deserving of recognition given their showings over the past seven  months.