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Martinez named World's No 1 goalkeeper at 2023 Ballon d'Or

30 Oct 2023
Emiliano, Alberto Martinez

Villa's World Cup winner claims Yashin Trophy, Erling Haaland takes Gerd Muller Trophy and Man City named Club of the Year

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Emiliano Martinez has won the prestigious Yashin Trophy at the Ballon d'Or ceremony in Paris, following his heroics for Aston Villa and Argentina.

Martinez was presented with the prize by his father Alberto, awarded to the best goalkeeper and named after legendary Russian ‘keeper Lev Yashin.

"I’m full of emotion to have won this,” said Martinez. “Without my team-mates at Aston Villa and in the Argentina national team, this wouldn’t have been possible – this moment in my career.

"I was looking at the screen with the previous award winners and it is a really proud moment to join them.

"We are part of the goalkeepers' union and it is important to stick together!"

The 31-year-old was nominated after he enjoyed an excellent year, firstly winning the FIFA World Cup 2022 and Golden Glove with Argentina, before helping Villa qualify for the UEFA Europa Conference League.

During the World Cup in Qatar, Martinez saved two penalties in a quarter-final shootout win over Netherlands, while he made a brilliant block in stoppage time against France to force the final to penalties, where he kept out yet another spot-kick as Argentina triumphed to lift the trophy.

Martinez saw off competition from fellow Premier League nominees Aaron Ramsdale at Arsenal, Manchester City’s Ederson, who has finished third twice for this award, and Manchester United’s Andre Onana.

Haaland runner-up to Messi

Elsewhere, Man City's record-breaking goalscorer Erling Haaland finished second to Lionel Messi, who won the Ballon d'Or for a record eighth time.

Of the 30 nominees for the esteemed individual accolade, which celebrates one star's standout achievements from the 2022/23 season at club or international level, 14 are playing in the Premier League this campaign or starred in the competition last season.

For the second year running, Man City had more players on the Ballon d'Or shortlist for than any other club.

"To have so many nominees, it's a sign of the work that we as a club do," said midfielder Bernardo Silva, one of eight Man City players shortlisted for the Ballon d'Or. "It is extra motivation to work together to be even better."

PL stars nominated for 2023 Ballon d'Or
Player Club
Bukayo Saka, Martin Odegaard Arsenal
Emiliano Martinez Aston Villa
Mohamed Salah Liverpool
Erling Haaland, Kevin De Bruyne,
Julian Alvarez, Rodri, Ilkay Gundogan, Bernardo Silva, Ruben Dias, Josko Gvardiol
Man City
Andre Onana Man Utd
Harry Kane Spurs

Haaland did not finish the night empty-handed, however, as his 56 goals in 2022/23 were rewarded with the Gerd Müller Trophy, presented annually to the highest-scoring footballer in the previous season for both club and international teams.

Paying tribute to his "amazing" Man City team-mates, Haaland said, "I want to score, I want to have this feeling that I had quite a few times last season. It's a mix of amazing team-mates to an amazing club. Look at some of the passes I get; it was a fantastic season."

On a night in which a moving tribute was paid to the late Man Utd legend Sir Bobby Charlton and Brazil great Pele, Man City were also named Men's Club of the Year. 

"This is not the product of one season, it is the product of more than a decade of hard work," said City's chief executive officer, Ferran Soriano.

"We know that there are many excellent football clubs, but it is an honour to receive this award for a second year in a row."

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