Chelsea, Ronaldo Win Champions League Awards

Chelsea won three out of four of the Champions League best player awards despite finishing runners-up, with champions Manchester United winning the other...
Cech, who was on the losing end of the Champions League final penalty shootout against Edwin van der Sar and Manchester United, nevertheless pipped the Dutchman to the award for his superb performances on the way to and even during the final.

"Of course it was difficult, because it was up to me and five players who were chosen to shoot, but you have to concentrate on yourself and this is what I try to do," explained the goalkeeper, recalling that dramatic, rain-soaked shootout in Moscow.

Following up on that win was another for the runners-up, with penalty-missing Blues skipper John Terry perhaps somewhat controversially beating the likes of Rio Ferdinand to the award. The newly re-elected England captain was delighted with the award and hailed his team-mates.

"For me persnally, it's an amazing achievement to get this award this evening," he said. "To be a great defender you need a lot of attributes; to read the game very well, be quick, strong, good in the air, and you also need good team-mates around you, which I have bundles of, so I'm happy."

The London club had yet more to cheer about when Frank Lampard beat a host of Premier League contenders to the best midfielder award. The England international paid tribute to the other nominees and expressed his happiness at having finally won the award. "It feels very good," he began, "when you see the players that you're against, theres some world class players in there, I've been amongst them for three years it's good to finally win one."

The winners finally picked up an award, and it of course went to Cristiano Ronaldo, for best forward. The secret to his success? "Work. I think Manchester had a great season and I scored many goals.

"I feel very proud because my position is winger and to win the best forward is good for me, it gives me ambition to work good and better. Thank you everyone who voted for me, thank you to my team-mates, and good night."

And of the four separate winners, it was Ronaldo who won the overall award for best player. "To win this award is great for me," said the Portuguese ace. "I feel very proud, very good, to win this, because the Champions League is one of the best. Every player likes to play this competition and to be the best."

He again gave thanks to many, but for the second time neglected to mention manager Sir Alex Ferguson, who was sitting in the crowd. "For me, is great, thank you everyone, thank you my team-mates, thank you to everyone, to all the players, it's great, it's good for me, I feel very happy."

Best Goalkeeper: Petr Cech (Chelsea)


Nominees: Manuel Almunia (Arsenal), Manuel Neuer (Schalke 04), Jose Reina (Liverpool), Edwin van der Sar (Manchester United).

Best Defender: John Terry (Chelsea)

Nominees: Jamies Carragher (Liverpool), Rio Ferdinand (Manchester United), Carles Puyol (Barcelona).

Best Midfielder: Frank Lampard (Chelsea)

Nominees: Michael Essien (Chelsea), Cesc Fabregas (Arsenal), Steve Gerrard (Liverpool), Paul Scholes (Manchester United).

Best Forward: Cristiano Ronaldo (Manchester United)

Nominees: Didier Drogba (Chelsea), Lionel Messi (Barcelona), Wayne Rooney (Manchester United), Fernando Torres (Liverpool).

Best Player: Cristiano Ronaldo (Manchester United)

Sulmaan Ahmad, Goal.com