RYAN Edwards was a popular double winner at tonight's Burton Albion Players’ Awards for the 2020/21 season.
The midfielder’s wholehearted performances won him the respect of his teammates and Brewers supporters alike after he picked up both the Players’ Player of the Year and The Player of the Year trophies.
The coveted Player of the Year award was voted for by Season Ticket Holders, Vice Presidents and sponsors with Edwards a runaway winner after taking nearly half of all votes cast.
Edwards said: "I'm very, very shocked, but also very happy. It's the first time in my career to win both of these awards.
"The Players' Player is one you hold close to your heart, to have your efforts recognised on the pitch by your teammates. It's really great.
"Getting Player of the Year from the fans is really pleasing to win as well. We've missed playing in front of the fans this season so for them to pay out of their own pocket, and Season Ticket holders, to watch us on iFollow, it means a great deal to me personally and to the players in the changing room."
The full list of awards given out on the night were:
Community Player of the Season - Kane Hemmings
Special Recognition for Exceptional Service to Burton Albion – Fleur Robinson
Top Goal Scorer – Kane Hemmings
Goal of the Season – Joe Powell v Portsmouth
Players’ Player of the Season – Ryan Edwards
Player of the Season Runner Up – Hayden Carter
Player of the Season – Ryan Edwards
In addition, to mark Burton Albion’s 70th anniversary season, four Brewers legends from the 1950s were inducted into the Hall of Fame – Nobby Hadfield, Bill Townsend, Reg Weston and Dave McAdam.
The awards took place on Zoom this year due to Covid restrictions with Season Ticket Holders, Vice Presidents and sponsors invited to attend.
The evening was hosted by Matt Hancock, Head of Community, with manager Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink, his assistant Dino Maamria and skipper John Brayford on hand to talk us through the season.
The Goal of the Season was chosen on the night with Joe Powell’s stunning effort against Portsmouth picking up the most votes in a poll of supporters on the night.
Chairman Ben Robinson thanked all the sponsors, Season Ticket Holders and partners for their incredible support and congratulated the manager, his staff and squad on saving the club from relegation after a remarkable turnaround in fortunes.
He said: “It has been a tradition of Burton Albion to end the season with our awards night and to celebrate all we have achieved over the last year.
“Sadly, we couldn’t do that by all being in a room together but only by Zoom, which has become the new normal in the pandemic.
“That just shows how much we have had to do to adapt and meet the challenges brought to us by the pandemic, which have affected everyone in all walks of life.
“We are always reminded that so many things are more important than football and nothing has done that more than the last year of dealing with Covid-19. But we have also seen again how football can be the starting point for a community response and how the club has been able to step up and make a difference.
“We are therefore proud of what we have been able to achieve on and off the pitch this year.”