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Champions League Defender of the Season: Rúben Dias

Rúben Dias has been named Defender of the Season for the 2020/21 UEFA Champions League.

UEFA Defender of the Season 2020/21 - Rúben Dias
UEFA Defender of the Season 2020/21 - Rúben Dias

Manchester City's Rúben Dias has been named Defender of the Season for the 2020/21 UEFA Champions League.

The Portuguese centre-back, outstanding in his first season in England, beat off competition from Chelsea pair César Azpilicueta and Antonio Rüdiger. The award was presented to the 24-year-old during the 2021/22 UEFA Champions League group stage draw ceremony in Istanbul.

Does Rúben Dias make your Fantasy team?

The top ten

Rúben Dias is presented with his award before Manchester City's UEFA Champions League game against Leipzig
Rúben Dias is presented with his award before Manchester City's UEFA Champions League game against LeipzigManchester City FC via Getty Images

1 Rúben Dias (Man. City) – 217 points
2 César Azpilicueta (Chelsea) – 115 points
3 Antonio Rüdiger (Chelsea) – 78 points*
4 Marquinhos (Paris) – 78 points*
5 Thiago Silva (Chelsea) – 59 points
6 Kyle Walker (Man. City) – 35 points
7 Giorgio Chiellini (Juventus) – 18 points
8 John Stones (Man. City) – 15 points
9 David Alaba (Bayern, now at Real Madrid) – 14 points
= Leonardo Bonucci (Juventus) – 14 points

*Rüdiger higher as he received more first-choice votes

2020/21 Champions League stats

Appearances: 11
Clean sheets: 6
Goals conceded: 5
Passes completed: 852

UEFA Defender of the Year 2020/21 - Rúben Dias
UEFA Defender of the Year 2020/21 - Rúben Dias

Rúben Dias testimonials

"He is a guy that can play every three days. He recovers immediately and his ability is incredible, as is his understanding of the game. He wants to learn and all of us were impressed by how he takes care of his body and mind every day. We were surprised a lot. He has been so important to us."
Josep Guardiola, Man. City manager

"He's so young and to dominate like he's done [has been impressive]. Dias is exceptional; he makes the rest of the team safe. He has been City's most important player."
Gary Neville, former Man. United defender

Rúben Dias vs Paris
Rúben Dias vs Paris

How Rúben Dias was chosen

The jury comprised the following:

  • 24 coaches of the teams which participated in this summer’s UEFA EURO 2020
  • 80 coaches of the clubs that participated in the group stages of the 2020/21 UEFA Champions League (32) and UEFA Europa League (48)
  • 55 journalists selected by the European Sports Media (ESM) group, one from each of UEFA's member associations

Jury members chose their top three players, with the first receiving five points, the second three and the third one. Coaches were not allowed to vote for players from their own team.

The other award winners

UEFA Men's Player of the Year: Jorginho (Chelsea & Italy)
UEFA Women's Player of the Year: Alexia Putellas (Barcelona & Spain)
UEFA Men's Coach of the Year: Thomas Tuchel (Chelsea)
UEFA Women's Coach of the Year: Lluís Cortés (Barcelona)

UEFA Champions League Goalkeeper of the Season: Edouard Mendy (Chelsea)
UEFA Champions League Men's Midfielder of the Season: N'Golo Kanté (Chelsea)

UEFA Champions League Men's Forward of the Season: Erling Haaland (Dortmund)

UEFA Women's Champions League Goalkeeper of the Season: Sandra Paños (Barcelona)
UEFA Women's Champions League Defender of the Season: Irene Paredes (Barcelona)
UEFA Women's Champions League Midfielder of the Season: Alexia Putellas (Barcelona)
UEFA Women's Champions League Forward of the Season: Jenni Hermoso (Barcelona)

UEFA President's Award: Danish medical team, Simon Kjær

Last year's winner

Bayern's Joshua Kimmich won the 2019/20 Defender of the Season award. Kimmich enjoyed a stellar season with Bayern, helping them to the treble of UEFA Champions League, Bundesliga and German Cup. The versatile full-back started all but one of the 11 fixtures in their triumphant European campaign, and set up Kingsley Coman for the winner in the final victory over Paris in Lisbon.