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Sunday, March 24, 2013
ESPNsoccernet: March 25, 11:14 AM UK
Vydra named Player of the Year

ESPN staff

Watford striker Matej Vydra has been named Football League Player of the Year for the 2012-13 season.

Vydra, 20, joined Watford on loan from Udinese last summer and has scored 20 goals in 34 Championship appearances - ten of those from the substitutes' bench. The award was collected by Watford manager Gianfranco Zola in Vydra's absence on World Cup qualifying duty with the Czech Republic.

He fought off competition from Crystal Palace striker Glenn Murray, who is the top scorer in the whole of the Football League with 29 Championship goals so far.

• Awards highlight Premier League youth failings

Blackpool and England Under-21 forward Thomas Ince, who was wanted by former club Liverpool and Reading in January, was named Young Player of the Year. Ince beat Crystal Palace's Manchester United-bound winger Wilfried Zaha and Vydra to the gong. Ince also finished in the top three for the Player of the Year award.

Ince said: "It's been a whirlwind 18 months for me. It's been fantastic. I left Liverpool to get games in the Championship and I'm enjoying it at Blackpool. It's a proud moment for me and my family.''

The League One award went to Matt Ritchie, who started the season with Swindon before moving to their promotion rivals Bournemouth in January, with Port Vale's 25-goal striker Tom Pope winning in League Two.

Bradford City manager Phil Parkinson won the Outstanding Managerial Achievement award for taking the Bantams to the League Cup final. He said: "I'm very honoured to receive this award. My name might be on it but it is a team award. Not just the team on the pitch but the team off it as well.''

Former England goalkeeper Peter Shilton, who played more than 1,000 Football League matches, picked up the Contribution to League Football award.




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