As the 2019/20 Premier League campaign has concluded, fans will all have their say on Arsenal’s Player of the Season award. Previous winners of the award are Cesc Fabregas, Robin van Persie and last years winner, Alexandre Lacazette.
This season though, the award seems highly likely to go to top goalscorer Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, with the Gabon international being Arsenal’s only consistent attacking player throughout the campaign. However, if you judge a Player of the Season by other than simply who the best player was, you might have a different opinion on who should win the award.
Arsenal have offered 3 options as to who should win but there are many ways of viewing a campaign. Lets look at other awards that should be given to certain Arsenal players.
This is the Arsenal End Season Awards for the Premier League 2019/20 season.
Exceeds Expectations Award: Bernd Leno
Going into the season, there was a sense of optimism around Arsenal. Many thought they might capture the attacking presence they once had with a firing front line of Lacazette, Aubameyang and Nicolas Pepe. However, they looked very reactive and defensive for most of 2019, something which eventually got Unai Emery the sack. This didn’t stop Leno from flourishing though, as he was relied upon to make save after save time and again. Hopefully he won’t need to do quite as much work next season, but Arsenal fans will be grateful for the performances of Leno this season and he definitely outperformed any expectations the fans had at the beginning of the year.
Breakthrough Star: Bukayo Saka
Many players have had a breakthrough into the first team this season, Gabriel Martinelli, Joe Willock but the star standout this year has been Bukayo Saka. Promoted to the first team by Unai Emery and Freddie Ljungberg, Saka has impressed with his mentality, versatility, but most of all with his performances. He’s got all the attributes to become a really good player for Arsenal and the sky is the limit for the young man.
Most Improved: Granit Xhaka
What an interesting season for Granit Xhaka. Given the Arsenal captaincy after the departure of Laurent Koscielny, his performances in the early part of the season were very poor and fans turned on him in a big way. When being subbed off in a game against Crystal Palace, he snapped and shouted “F*** off” visibly to the fans on camera. His Arsenal career looked to be coming to an end after he was stripped of the captaincy and exiled from the first team squad. Once Mikel Arteta was appointed manager though, he breathed new life into Xhaka and his performances have since been stellar. Whilst some fans are still not fully sold on Xhaka, most will appreciate how much better he has been since the back end of 2019.
Signing of the Season: Kieran Tierney
This was a difficult choice. Pepe’s output this season has been very good and Martinelli has been sensational at times but since locking down a first team spot this season, Tierney has been a true example of what Arsenal need going forward. He’s been a composed, level headed talent and has let his football do all the talking. Reports suggest that he’s brought intensity in training performances that have forced the players around him to step up, which Arsenal fans will be delighted to hear. If his performances continue to impress he’ll become a fan favourite in no time.
Assist of the Season: Matteo Guendouzi vs Tottenham (Sep 1. 2019)
Goal of the Season: Gabriel Martinelli vs Chelsea (Jan 21. 2020)
Photo: (Dave Pearce, 2014)