At a ceremony in Istanbul on Thursday, Karim Benzema and Alexia Putellas received the UEFA men’s and women’s player of the year awards in recognition of their excellent seasons.
The French forward Karim Benzema led Real Madrid to victory over Liverpool in the Champions League championship game and finished with 15 goals overall, while Putellas led all scorers in the Women’s Champions League, advancing Barcelona to the championship game where they fell to Lyon.
In the Champions League knockout rounds, the 34-year-old scored hat-tricks against Paris Saint-Germain and Chelsea and struck three goals over the course of the two legs in the semifinal match versus Manchester City.
In total, he scored 44 goals in 46 games as Real also captured the Spanish championship.
Putellas, 28, won the award for a second consecutive year despite having a severe knee injury that prevented her from competing in Euro 2022.
Beth Mead of England, the tournament’s co-leading scorer and a young German midfielder named Lena Oberdorf came in second place.
Sarina Wiegman of the Netherlands won the award for best women’s coach after leading England to Euro victory on home soil last month. Carlo Ancelotti was voted best men’s coach for his success with Real.