Ryan claims another prestigious award

FOR the second year in a row Central Coast Mariners custodian Mathew Ryan has been named Australia’s U20 Male Footballer of the Year.

FOR the second year in a row Central Coast Mariners custodian Mathew Ryan has been named Australia-s U20 Male Footballer of the Year.

The fourth annual Australian Football Awards were held at a gala event at the Sofitel Hotel in Sydney last night, with Italian legend Alessandro Del Piero the evening-s guest of honour.

Ryan, who has collected a host of awards over the past twelve months for his epic efforts on the football pitch, won out over a hot field of his footballing peers to claim one of the evening-s most prestigious honours.

Aston Villa midfielder and Qantas Socceroos regular Brett Holman won the Footballer of the Year Award (Male), while Qantas Matildas ace Sally Shipard won Footballer of the Year (Female).

Melbourne Victory-s Stephanie Catley won U20 Footballer of the Year (Female).

New Football Federation Australia CEO, Mr David Gallop said: “It-s a wonderful night for the game to celebrate the diversity of Australian football and pay tribute to everyone from the volunteers through to the superstars.”

“The AFAs are an important occasion to show that the national governing body wants to nurture that connection to the grassroots. My goal is for everyone who plays, watches and works in the game to feel like they belong in football.

“I congratulate all the winners for their contribution to a stellar year for the game in 2012.”

For a full list of the evening-s winners please visit www.footballaustralia.com.au.

Vist ccmariners.com.au later this afternoon for reaction from Mariners goalkeeper Mathew Ryan.