Costa Rica’s Keylor Navas named CONCACAF’s Player of the Year

December 23, 2014
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Costa Rican footballers took a total of 10 awards at the annual Confederation of North, Central America and Caribbean Association Football (CONCACAF) Awards announced on Tuesday, including Tico goalie Keylor Navas, who won Player of the Year.

Results came from an equally-weighted vote among member national team coaches and captains, members of the media and fans.

The Real Madrid keeper beat Costa Rica’s captain Bryan Ruiz, who took second-place in the Player of the Year category. Navas earlier this year also won Spain’s Best Goalkeeper and was one of three finalists for the FIFA World Cup’s best goalie award in Brazil.

Costa Rica’s Women’s National Team captain and Paris Saint Germain star Shirley Cruz took second place as Female Player of the Year, behind the United States’ Abby Wambach. Cruz is part of the Women’s Sele that this year qualified for the FIFA World Cup Canada 2015 for the first time ever.

Jorge Luis Pinto, who lead Costa Rica’s National Team known as La Sele in its best performance ever at a World Cup, was named Coach of the Year, and Alajuelense Coach Óscar Ramírez took third.

Ticos also scored CONCACAF’s best goals, with Bryan Ruiz’s historic World Cup strike against Italy in June taking Goal of the Year, followed by Herediano’s Esteban Ramírez’s potent kick against Saprissa in second place and Joel Campbell’s World Cup goal against Uruguay in third.

Costa Rica’s Walter Quesada took third place for the Referee of the Year category.

Here’s a full list of winners in each category:

Men’s Player of the Year

Winner:  Keylor Navas, Goalkeeper (Real Madrid/SPA and Costa Rica)

Second:  Bryan Ruiz, Forward (Fulham FC/ENG and Costa Rica)

Third:  Tim Howard, Goalkeeper (Everton/ENG and United States)

Women’s Player of the Year

Winner:  Abby Wambach, Forward (Western New York Flash/USA and United States)

Second:  Shirley Cruz, Midfielder (Paris Saint Germain/FRA and Costa Rica)

Third:  Veronica Charlyn Corral (Merilappi United/FIN and Mexico)

Goalkeeper of the Year

Winner:  Tim Howard (Everton/ENG and United States)

Second:  Guillermo Ochoa (Malaga/SPA and Mexico)

Third:  Keylor Navas (Real Madrid/SPA and Costa Rica)

Coach of the Year

Winner:  Jorge Luis Pinto (Costa Rica)

Second:  Luis Fernando Suárez (Honduras)

Third:  Óscar Ramírez (LD Alajuelense/CRC)

Referee of the Year

Winner:  Mark Geiger (USA)

Second:  Marco Antonio Rodríguez (Mexico)

Third:  Walter Quesada (Costa Rica)

Goal of the Year

Winner:  Bryan Ruiz, Costa Rica vs. Italy, 44th minute (June 20, 2014)

Second:  Esteban Ramírez, Herediano vs. Saprissa, 20th minute (November 2, 2014)
Third:  Joel Campbell, Costa Rica vs. Uruguay, 54th minute (June 14, 2014)

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