In response to Luis Suarez being named the Liverpool Fan’s Player of the Year Award, Branislav Ivanovic is The Premier League Insider Player of the Year 2012/13.
The reasons can be summed up in the following:
UEFA Europa League
Ivanovic was instrumental in Chelsea defeating Benfica to win the UEFA Europa League. He scored the second goal within minutes remaining of the tournament.
Ivanovic executed a header which reached into the goal post far corner. In so doing, he stunned a Benfica team who hoped to go to extra time and penalties.
The result was great news for a team with an embattled season which saw changes in managers. Ivanovic proved with his goal that Chelsea still had some resistance left.
His Chelsea Career
Ivanovic arrived at Stamford Bridge from Lokomotiv Moscow, FK Srem, and OFK Belgrade in 2008. It was not an easy task arriving in London from Central Europe.
In time, Ivanovic managed to adapt to life at Stamford Bridge and began making progress with the team. He was eventually praised for his consistency and discipline during matches by the Chelsea FC webpage.
Since his arrival, Ivanovic managed to score 22 goals within 219 matches that Chelsea participated. On the negative side, he accumulated 38 yellow and one red card.
The last Premier League [EPL] season saw Ivanovic score five goals within 34 matches for Chelsea. He did 25 shots and one assist in these EPL matches during the last season.
Suarez vs. Ivanovic
The Suarez vs. Ivanovic escapade at Anfield during the when Chelsea and Liverpool is another factor. Who cannot forget when Suarez decided to bite Ivanovic’s arm during the match?
The result was a ten match ban for the Liverpool striker by the Football Association of England [FA]. Suarez’s antics were also condemned by the Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe.
Mugabe said that football is a time for matches instead of war. Ivanovic might have done the right thing in not accepting an apology from Suarez.
At the same time, Suarez is lucky that Ivanovic decided not to press charges against him.
It is an honor and privilege to start The Premier League Insider Player of the Year award with Bratislav Ivanovic. We will be continuing these honors every year after the end of each Premier League season.
Our best wishes for you now and always until the next time.