HONG KONG (Reuters) - AFC Champions League winners Kashima Antlers dominate the nominees for the Asian Player of the Year awards after both Kento Misao and Yuma Suzuki were shortlisted for the Asian Football Confederation’s annual prize on Monday.
Misao and Suzuki played key roles in Kashima’s run to their first-ever continental title, with the club defeating Persepolis of Iran over two legs in the final earlier in the month.
The Japanese duo are joined on the shortlist by Al Sadd’s Qatar international left back Abdelkarim Hassan.
The awards ceremony will take place in the Omani capital Muscat next Wednesday.
Kashima coach Go Oiwa is also among the nominees for the men’s coaching title alongside Ravshan Khaydarov, who led Uzbekistan to the Asian under-23 title earlier this year, and AFC Cup-winning coach Basim Qasim Hamdan from Iraq’s Air Force Club.
Reigning Asian Women’s Player of the Year Samantha Kerr from Australia is nominated for the award again this year, where she is joined by Wang Shuang of China and Paris Saint-Germain and Japan’s Saki Kumagai.
Reporting by Michael Church, Editing by Amlan Chakraborty