The year 2015 brought along with it a bucket-load of surprises for football fans. From new names grabbing headlines, the usual suspects staying ahead of the game, record breakers and players who won trophies en masse, it has been a year to remember.
Of all that has happened – Leicester, Chelsea, Watford’s record summer signings, Juventus, Enyimba, the Messi-less Barcelona, that Lewa’s 5 goals in 9 minutes, that Messi dribble that finished Boateng’s career, Di Maria, van Gaal, Aguero’s 5 goals in 21 minutes, Vardy’s 11 in 11, Pep’s 2-3-5 formation, the Paris drama that made the German National Football Team spend the night in the dressing room, Florenzi’s goal against Barca, Osimhen and the Golden Eaglets, Jose Mourinho’s classic post-match comments and more – we at ForTheGoals have selected 15 players whose performances this year surpassed that of their counterparts… by miles! Here’s our countdown:
15. Carlos Tevez
If there’s a list of footballers that can play the game and don’t mind where they play the beautiful game, Carlos ‘Carlitos’ Tevez would be atop it .
In 2015, Carlitos rounded off the season with Juventus, winning a domestic double and reaching the Champions League finals. He then left for Boca Juniors, the club where it all started, to win another domestic double, grabbing the footballing record for being the first player to win doubles at two clubs in a calender year along the way.
With 29 goals for both clubs this calender year, he sure has wounded a lot of defenses and left loads of scars. His goal scoring heroics no doubt will shame captain Rooney. Carlitos has been one of the best doing it in full glare of the footballing world and some of its hidden parts.
14. Pierre Aubameyang
Where did he come from? That’s a mohawk? Oh! He’s scored! 27goals in 26 appearances this season! If he were some captain in Manchester you’ll hear “he scores when he wants” everytime he scores. The very elusive Aubameyang has caught the world’s attention with his exploits in Germany.
Having previously played for 14 clubs (his speed must have helped him move from each club so quickly), the 26 year old Gabonese looks like he has found a settlement for his trade and he’s building a dynasty.
He’s had an explosive 2015, scoring more goals in the top 5 leagues for club and country than anyone bar the MSN gang, CR7 and Ibrahimovic. His 42 goals this year has helped Dortmund mount a challenge on the Bundesliga – as ironic as it may sound – and helped Gabon qualify for the group phase of African World Cup qualifiers.
He’s has the world’s attention… He’s had a great year.
13. Antoine Griezmann
Maybe all top players see hair styles as some sort of inspiration, we’ll never know, some just haven’t just decided on their hair colour… *steps in Griezmann*. French man, multicoloured hair and match winner. He scores so many match winners his nickname should be “3 points”.
Carving a niche for himself in a league where most of the world’s top players converge, Griezmann has managed to grab the spotlight for himself from time to time.
He features for his consistency and knack for goal scoring, you have to be consistent to be reckoned with in a league containing most of the world’s galacticos, even making the la liga team of the season for 14/15.
His 2015 wasn’t amazing but it was close.
12. Claudio Bravo
What else can be said about a goalie that won the UEFA Champions League, the La Liga title, the Copa America, the UEFA Super Cup and the FIFA World Club Cup… all in one year?
Claudio Andrés Bravo had a 2015 that most goalkeepers in the world would be envious of. For every competition he participated in, he won a trophy. After winning the UEFA Champions League and La Liga, he went home and led Chile to their first major international honour as they conquered the Copa America. He played every minute of the tourney, saved a penalty in the final against Argentina and was voted best goalkeeper of the tournament; and all this was after he was named the goalkeeper in the La Liga 2014/2015 Team of the Season. He capped it off with the UEFA Super Cup and the FIFA World Club Cup. I didn’t mention his goalkeeping skills right? Well, his trophies speak volumes for him.
Author: Rotimi “Papi the Great” Daramola
Rotimi Daramola aka Papi the Great is the owner of ForTheGoal.
A freelance sports writer who focuses on football, Rotimi is also a freelance writer, a copywriter and a football analyst who regularly appears on radio and television to talk football. You can follow him on twitter @papi_thegreat to keep up with his writings, engage him and also find out about how you can secure his writing services.