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Cristiano voted England’s best again

London: Manchester United winger Cristiano Ronaldo was voted England’s Footballer of the Year on Friday — only the second player to win the award in successive seasons since its introduction 60 years ago.

Liverpool striker Fernando Torres and Portsmouth goalkeeper David James finished second and third respectively in the poll organised by the Football Writers Association (FWA) since 1948.

The 23-year-old Portuguese was the overwhelming winner, a week after being named the Professional Footballers’ Association Player of the Year.

Ronaldo, who has scored 38 goals this season, follows former Arsenal striker Thierry Henry as the only other man to win the award in successive seasons. Henry won the award in 2003 and 2004 and again in 2006.

“Ronaldo’s award is no surprise after his brilliant form this season,” FWA Chairman Paul Hetherington said.

“Our records show he is the most overwhelming winner since Billy Bremner won it in 1970. He did not exactly get 100 percent of the vote, but from the moment voting started he moved to the front and stayed there.

“To score 38 goals in a season — so far — is an astonishing feat for a player who is essentially a winger. Given his age, he has the potential and ability to dominate this award for years in an unprecedented way.”

Stanley Matthews won the first Footballer of the Year award in 1948.

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