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UEFA Player Of The Year – Arjen Robben

Arejn Robben is the second nominee on the European Player of the Year shortlist, but can he beat Manuel Neuer and Cristiano Ronaldo? We take a look at his illustrious career.

The 30-year-old started his career at Groningen but his talent was soon spotted by PSV Eindhoven, whom he joined in 2002. He won the Eredivisie in his first season at PSV, scoring 12 goals and was voted Talent of the Year at the 2003 Dutch PFA awards, ahead of Wesley Sneijder.

Robben made his Netherlands debut in a friendly against Portugal on 30 April 2003 and his major tournament bow came at UEFA EURO 2004, where he scored the winning penalty in a quarter-final shoot-out with Sweden, and he was also on song for Oranje at the 2006 FIFA World Cup and UEFA EURO 2008.

In 2004, he joined Chelsea and, though his debut was delayed due to injury, he made a major impact when fit, winning two Premier League titles and three domestic cups.

In 2007, he became Real Madrid's fourth most expensive signing after arriving for €35m and won the Spanish title in his first season. However, het departed at the end of the second season, transferring to Bayern for €25m.

Robben scored a career-best 16 league goals in his first campaign, winning the Bundesliga and German Cup but losing to Inter in the UEFA Champions League final.

He was instrumental in the Netherlands’ 2010 World Cup campaign and helped them with two goals to the final, where they lost to Spain.

Robben’s personal 'competition-final curse' continued when he had an extra-time penalty, which would have given his team the lead, saved by Chelsea's Petr Čech in the 2012 UEFA Champions League final. Bayern lost in the subsequent shoot-out.

However, this curse finally ended when he scored the winner in the all-German final against Borussia Dortmund 12 months later.

The Dutchman excelled at the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil with his direct running and dribbling, scoring three goals, including two in a 5-1 group stage defeat of Spain, during the Oranje's journey to the semi-finals.

Robben is shortlisted for the European Player of the Year award for the first time and the winner will be announced on Thursday, 28 August, during the Champions League group stage draw.

Do you think Arjen Robben can win the European Player of the Year award? Have your say in the comment section below.


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