Soccer

Playmakers share A-League’s top award

Playmakers Ulises Davila and Milos Ninkovic have been crowned joint winners of the Johnny Warren Medal for the 2020-21 A-League season.

Sydney FC star and 2017 medal winner Ninkovic and Mexican midfielder Davila, who is leaving Wellington Phoenix and expected to join Macarthur FC, each polled 34 points to share the award for the A-League’s player of the season.

Next best was last year’s Johnny Warren medallist, Italian playmaker Alessandro Diamanti, who tallied 31 points for his efforts with Western United.

Socceroos striker Jamie Maclaren, who won the Golden Boot with 25 goals for Melbourne City, was fourth with 29 points, while Central Coast Mariners captain Oliver Bozanic rounded out the top five with 27 points.

Maclaren, who has scored 59 goals in 63 appearances for City, earlier declared he wanted to become a club “legend” after re-signing with the A-League heavyweights until June 2024.

“My numbers at City right now are quite good and I want to build on that,” Maclaren said.

“Not only that, just be a legend for this club. I don’t think I’m there yet.”

Ulises Davila is a joint winner of this season’s Johnny Warren Medal. Picture: Tony Feder/Getty ImagesSource:Getty Images

Maclaren’s mentor Patrick Kisnorbo was named coach of year for guiding City, who meet Sydney FC in Sunday’s grand final, to their first Premier’s Plate.

Queenslander Chris Beath was named referee of the season, while Sydney FC defender Joel King was named young footballer of the year.

Sydney’s Andrew Redmayne and the Central Coast Mariners’ Mark Birighitti shared the award for goalkeeper of the year.

Goal of the season was won by Perth Glory marksman Andy Keogh for his 24th-minute Round 21 strike against Western Sydney Wanderers.

The Fair Play award, given to the team with the best on-field disciplinary record, was won by Brisbane Roar.

The Julie Dolan Medal, awarded to the W-League player of the year, went to Canberra United striker Michelle Heyman, who polled 19 points to win by two from joint runners-up Emily Gielnik (Brisbane Roar) and Kyra Cooney-Cross (Melbourne Victory).

Gielnik’s 13 goals earned the Matildas attacker Golden Boot honours.

Jeff Hopkins was named W-League coach of the year for guiding the Victory to the championship.

Players’ union Professional Footballers Australia has also announced its A-League team of the season, which features Davila, Maclaren and Bozanic.

PFA team of the season: Adam Federici, Rhyan Grant, Curtis Good, Ruom Tongyik, Scott Jamieson, Oliver Bozanic, Connor Metcalfe, Ulises Davila, Matt Derbyshire, Craig Noone, Jamie Maclaren. Subs: Ryan Strain, Luke Brattan, Matt Simon, Ryan McGowan, Milos Ninkovic, Jay O’Shea Coach: Patrick Kisnorbo

Originally published asPlaymakers share A-League’s top award

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