Gurban Gurbanov has been named Azerbaijan's Player of the Year by journalists, coaches and referees.
The 31-year-old forward beat Kiamal Guliev and Tarlan Ahmedov to the award despite a quiet domestic season with Russian club FC Volgar-Gazprom Astrakhan. But it was his international performances with the Azerbaijan national team that made him the outstanding candidate.
In February, Gurbanov's double strike helped his country draw 2-2 with Serbia and Montenegro in a UEFA European Championship qualifier. In June, he was on target again in a 2-1 victory against the same opponents.
Gurbanov is now Azerbaijan's all-time leading scorer with nine goals in 47 matches. "This is the first time I have been honoured with such an award and it is a far from ordinary event in my life," he said.