New Delhi, Nov 29 (IANS) UAE star striker Ahmed Khalil was on Sunday named the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) player of the year 2015 at the annual awards ceremony held here. Khalil was declared the winner, ahead of compatriot Omar Abdulrahman and Zheng Zhi of China. Khalil was named in the United Arab Emirates’ final squad for the 2015 AFC Asian Cup, held in Australia.
He started in the UAE’s opener match against Qatar and scored two goals in their 4-1 win. He was named man of the match and was the second top scorer of the tournament behind teammate Ali Mabkhout. On September 3, Khalil scored four goals, in the 10-0 defeat of Malaysia in a 2018 FIFA World Cup qualifier.
South Korean footballer Son Heung-min was named the AFC Asian international player of the year. The AFC national team of the year (men) went to Australia while Japan won the women’s national team award. Australia’s Ange Postecoglou was named the men’s coach of the year while Asako Takakura of Japan was named women’s coach of the year.
The AFC president recognition awards for grassroots football for inspiring category went to Japan, for developing category the winner was Vietnam and for aspiring category the winner was Brunei Darussalam. The fair play association of the year went to Japan Football Association. The club of the year was awarded to China’s Guangzhou Evergrande.
The futsal player of the year was given to Vahid Shamsaee of Iran, while the futsal team of the year was awarded to Iran’s Tasisat Daryaei. The youth player of the year in the men’s category was given to Dostonbek Khamdamov of Uzbekisthan while Rikako Kobayashi of Japan won in women’s category. Brazil’s Ricardo Goulart Pereira was named foreign player of the year.
The AFC member association of the year in inspiring category went to Japan Football Association, while in the developing category, the award went to Hong Kong Football Association, whereas in the aspiring category, it was given to Bangladesh Football Federation. The Dream Asia Award went to the Chinese Football Association, the Japan Football Association and the Vietnam Football Federation.