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Eden Hazard named 2018-19 Europa League Player of the Season despite barely playing in the Europa League

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Olivier Giroud robbed

Chelsea v Arsenal - UEFA Europa League Final
Eden Hazard points to the player who should’ve been the Europa League Player of the Season
Photo by Alex Grimm/Getty Images

The first player nominated for the 2018-19 Europa League Player of the Season award led the competition in goals with 11, adding 5 assists across 14 (of 15 possible) appearances (1125 minutes).

The second player nominated for the 2018-19 Europa League Player of the Season award was second in the competition in goals with 10, adding 1 assist across 14 (of 14 possible) appearances (953 minutes).

The third player nominated for the 2018-19 Europa League Player of the Season award scored 2 goals, both in the final, and added 2 assists, one in the final and one in the semifinal second leg, across 8 (of 15 possible) appearances, starting just 4 (451 minutes).

Sure, goals and assists aren’t everything, but giving the Player of the Season to the Finals MVP, who started just 4 of the 15 games and didn’t even feature in almost half of them (7), is a massive joke.

The first player was Olivier Giroud and he was the obvious winner of the award as it should pertain to the whole season.

The second player was Luka Jović, and he would’ve been the obvious winner had Eintracht Frankfurt prevailed instead of Chelsea in the penalty shootout at Stamford Bridge in the semifinal second leg.

The third player was Eden Hazard, and while he made an appearance in every game starting with the quarterfinals (starting 3 of the last 5), to name him the Europa League Player of the Season ignores everything that happened in the competition before April.

What an absolute joke. Seasonal awards like these come down to popularity contests and name recognition exercises more often than not, but this is about as ridiculous of a case as we’ve ever seen.

Sorry, Olivier.