PFA Player of the year shortlist announced

N’Golo Kante and Eden Hazard’s efforts in Chelsea’s Premier League title charge have been recognised with nominations for the Professional Footballers’ Association Player of the Year award.

Kante, who was shortlisted last year for his role in Leicester’s remarkable season but did not make the top three, is the bookmakers’ favourite for the 2016-17 accolade, with the winners to be announced at Grosvenor House in London on Sunday, April 23.

Hazard picked up this award two years ago, when the Blues won the league at a canter under Jose Mourinho.

Alexis Sanchez, Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Romelu Lukaku and Harry Kane also feature on the six-man shortlist, the PFA has announced.

Everton forward Lukaku, the top flight’s leading scorer this term with 23 goals, is battling it out with a number of his fellow nominees for the Golden Boot.

Manchester United striker Ibrahimovic has scored 17 goals in his first season in English football, while Sanchez has notched 18 times to brighten up what has been a disappointing campaign for Arsenal.

Ibrahimovic has been United’s most prolific striker this season.

Kane – the only English nominee in this category – has netted 19 goals despite two spells out with ankle problems. He was third in the voting last year and has also been shortlisted for the Young Player of the Year gong alongside Spurs team-mate Dele Alli.

Alli, who turned 21 on Tuesday, won this award last year and has enjoyed another brilliant season, scoring 16 goals to help Mauricio Pochettino’s side emerge as Chelsea’s nearest challengers.

The Tottenham duo are joined by Lukaku, Burnley defender Michael Keane, Sunderland goalkeeper Jordan Pickford and Manchester City winger Leroy Sane.

Keane’s impressive form for the Clarets this term earned him a first England senior call-up late last year, and he now has two caps to his name.

Pickford has performed well between the posts in a struggling Black Cats side, while Germany international Sane has won rave reviews of late following his big-money summer move from Schalke.

Men’s PFA Players’ Player of the Year

Eden Hazard (Chelsea), Zlatan Ibrahimovic (Man Utd), Harry Kane (Tottenham), N’Golo Kanté (Chelsea), Romelu Lukaku (Everton), Alexis Sánchez (Arsenal)

Men’s PFA Young Player of the Year

Harry Kane (Tottenham), Dele Alli (Tottenham), Romelu Lukaku (Everton), Michael Keane (Burnley), Jordan Pickford (Sunderland), Leroy Sané (Manchester City).

Women’s PFA Players’ Player of the Year

Lucy Bronze (Manchester City), Karen Carney (Chelsea), Jane Ross (Manchester City), Jill Scott (Manchester City), Caroline Weir (Liverpool), Ellen White (Birmingham)

Women’s PFA Young Player of the Year

Millie Bright (Chelsea), Jess Carter (Birmingham), Nikita Parris (Manchester City), Georgia Stanway (Manchester City), Keira Walsh (Manchester City), Caroline Weir (Liverpool)

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