EFL stars of the past, present and future will once again gather for an evening to celebrate excellence both on and off the pitch, with the 13th annual EFL Awards ceremony confirmed to take place on Sunday 15 April 2018 at The Hilton Hotel on Park Lane, London.
New for 2018 is a Special Recognition Award which will celebrate the EFL’s continued commitment to Youth Development. From 2018/19 season, all EFL Clubs will need to name at least one Club Developed player on each team sheet for any EFL League game and this award will recognise a star-studded Club Developed XI, showcasing players ‘born and raised’ in the EFL, as well as the excellent work of EFL Clubs in developing some of the most talented footballers in the country.
Judged by a panel of leading experts from the football and media industry, awards will be given out across 12 categories. The 2016/17 winners were announced last year at the same venue in front of over 650 VIP guests with awards for clubs, players, managers, supporters and legends of the game. Last year Brentford B Head Coach Kevin O'Connor picked up the prestigious Sir Tom Finney Award in recognition of his exceptional career as a one-club man in the EFL.
EFL Chief Executive, Shaun Harvey, said: “The 2018 EFL Awards will once again bring together Club personnel, players, managers, sponsors, the media and industry peers to celebrate the achievements of our Clubs and their communities throughout the EFL. A new addition to the proceedings will see a Special Recognition Award celebrate those players who have learned their trade in the EFL and progressed to become household names both home and abroad with the first ever naming of an EFL Club Developed XI.This Award will provide the evening with a fantastic opportunity to shine a spotlight on the important role the EFL can play in the development of the next generation of footballers.”
Also, revealed on the evening are the Sky Bet Player of the Season Awards, with individual winners selected across all three divisions. Brighton and Hove Albion midfielder Anthony Knockaert was named Championship Player of the Season at last year’s Awards after being influential in the Seagulls’ promotion to the Premier League. In League One, Sheffield United’s Billy Sharp picked up the accolade after scoring an impressive 30 goals to help his side back to the Championship, while it was another striker who picked up the League Two Player of the Season, as Doncaster Rovers’ John Marquis fired in 26 goals for his Club in their return to League One.
One of the most prestigious accolades of the night is the Contribution to League Football award which recognises longstanding and exceptional service to the League with the late Jimmy Hill, late Jimmy Armfield, Peter Shilton and Barry Fry all previously recognised for their contribution. The winner of the eagerly anticipated Young Player of the Season will be in star studded company joining an illustrious list of previous winners including Gareth Bale, Nathaniel Clyne and Dele Alli. Last year the award was won by Brentford attacker Ollie Watkins, then with Exeter City. Supporters will also have the opportunity to vote for Goal of the Year before the final shortlisted is voted for on the night.
Categories are as follows:
- Checkatrade Community Club of the Year
- PFA Player in the Community
- Family Club of the Year
- LFE Apprentice of the Year (one per division)
- Supporter of the Year
- Mitre Goal of the Year
- Sky Bet Players of the Season (one per division)
- EA Sports Young Player of the Season
- Football Manager Team of the Season
- Sir Tom Finney Award
- Contribution to League Football
- Special Recognition Award
Updates on each Award category will follow in the coming weeks and will be published on efl.com.