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Apr 21, 2011

Meireles named Fans' Player of the Year

Liverpool midfielder Raul Meireles has been named the ESPN PFA Fans' Player of the Year, an award voted for by Premier League supporters.

• Forum: Would Meireles get your vote?

Meireles, 28, endured a difficult start to life at Anfield, seemingly struggling to adapt to life in English football after Roy Hodgson signed him from Porto last summer.

But under Kenny Dalglish the Portuguese international has flourished, scoring five goals since the turn of the year. All of those strikes came in an impressive six-game run, which helped lift the Reds from the Premier League doldrums and nto contenders for European qualification.

A dominant and dynamic box-to-box midfielder, Meireles has emerged as a key figure for Dalglish's Liverpool and his excellent work-rate, range of passing and ability to make himself a nuisance in the opposition's penalty area should see him continue to shine next season.

Meireles, who won the February ESPN PFA Fans' Player of the Month award, beat off stiff competition from fellow monthly winners Samir Nasri (October, December, January), Dimitar Berbatov (September), Fernando Torres (November) and David Luiz (March).

Watford striker Danny Graham, who has scored 26 goals this season, took home the Championship award, while Huddersfield's Peter Clarke won the League One gong and the League Two version went to Cody McDonald - on loan at Gillingham from Norwich.

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