Manuel Neuer was shocked to be named Germany's footballer of the year for 2010/11 ahead of Mario Gomez and Nuri Şahin, saying "when I was told I thought they were pulling my leg".
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FC Bayern München goalkeeper Manuel Neuer has been named Germany's footballer of the year for 2010/11, with Jürgen Klopp winning the coaches' accolade.
Neuer, a summer signing from FC Schalke 04, topped the poll of sports journalists organised by sports magazine Kicker. His total of 210 points placed him ahead of new team-mate Mario Gomez (190) and Nuri Şahin (142), who helped Borussia Dortmund to the Bundesliga title last season before joining Real Madrid CF.
Neuer, Germany's No1, is the first goalkeeper since Oliver Kahn in 2001 to receive the award. "I'm very surprised by this since it's not very often a goalkeeper wins this vote," said the 25-year-old, who succeeds Bayern winger Arjen Robben. "It's a great honour for me and when I was told I had won I thought they were pulling my leg."
Klopp was recognised for his achievement of guiding Dortmund to the title by an impressive seven points. The 44-year-old finished ahead of Hannover 96's Mirko Slomka and Lucien Favre, of VfL Borussia Mönchengladbach. German international Fatmire Bajramaj is the women's footballer of the year.