Rio De Janeiro, Jan 1 (IANS) Liverpool playmaker Philippe Coutinho has upstaged Neymar by winning the Samba d’Or award for the best Brazilian footballer in Europe in 2016.
Coutinho received 32.13 per cent of the votes to finish ahead of Barcelona forward Neymar (27.88 per cent) and Real Madrid midfielder Casemiro (13.35 per cent), Xinhua news agency reported.
Despite an ankle injury that sidelined him for all of December, Coutinho scored 13 goals for Liverpool in 2016 as Jurgen Klopp’s team challenge for the club’s first top-flight title since 1990.
Organised by Brazilian football magazine Sambafoot, the award is decided by players, former players, journalists and fans.
Neymar had been aiming to win the trophy for a third straight year. Other previous winners include Thiago Silva, Maicon, Luis Fabiano and Kaka.
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