The Asian Football Confederation (AFC) celebrated an outstanding year of Asian football tonight by awarding the continent’s brightest stars and greatest achievements in the game at the AFC Annual Awards 2015 in New Delhi, India.
In his welcome speech, AFC President Shaikh Salman bin Ebrahim Al Khalifa said: “For a long time people talked of the future being Asia – I am now convinced that the present is Asia. I am certain that we stand on the very brink of greatness in this continent – the dawning of the Asian age. And for that we all owe so much to the people that we honour, celebrate and acknowledge tonight here in New Delhi.”
United Arab Emirates player Ahmed Khalil was awarded the AFC Player of the Year 2015 Award. He helped UAE club Al Ahli reach the final of this year’s AFC Champions League and was the second highest goal scorer in the 2015 AFC Champions League, the 2015 AFC Asian Cup and in the ongoing FIFA World Cup 2018/AFC Asian Cup 2019 Joint Preliminary qualifiers.
AFC Player of the Year 2015 Ahmed Khalil said: “This award means a lot to me. But it is not just for me but also for the UAE national team and Al Ahli club. I would also like to congratulate them for this prize.”
The late Abdullah Khalid Al Dabal was awarded the Diamond of Asia 2015 award posthumously for his lifetime achievements in the beautiful game. The AFC Diamond of Asia trophy was received by Mr Abdullah Khalid Al Dabal’s son, Fahad.
He said: “I am greatly honoured and humbled in receiving this award on behalf of my family. I would like to thank Shaikh Salman bin Ebrahim Al Khalifa and the whole Asian football community for recognising the contribution of my late father.”
The winners in the other categories awarded in Delhi were:
AFC Dream Asia Award: Japan Football Association
AFC Aspiring Member Association of the Year: Bangladesh
AFC Developing Member Association of the Year: Hong Kong
AFC Inspiring Member Association of the Year: Japan
AFC National Team of the Year Women: Japan Women’s National Team
AFC National Team of the Year Men: Australia National Team
AFC Coach of the Year Men: Ange Postecoglou (AUS)
AFC Coach of the Year Women: Asako Takakura (JPN)
AFC Player of the Year Men: Ahmed Khalil (UAE)
The winner of the AFC Women’s Player of the Year Award 2015 was not announced tonight in New Delhi due to the nominees’ international duties. The AFC will organise a separate ceremony for this year’s Women’s Player of the Year Award to award the prize in a fitting and appropriate manner in order to give it the recognition it deserves.
For the full list of the award winners-