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Grant's Night To Remember

Lee Grant

Image by: Phil Greig

PUBLISHED

22:00 17th May 2017

Goalkeeper main winner at 2016/17 Awards Dinner...

LEE GRANT capped off a memorable 12 months in fairy-tale fashion at the Club’s glamorous ‘End of Season Awards Dinner’ on Wednesday evening by claiming a hat-trick of accolades.

The former England U21 international was rewarded for his outstanding debut campaign at the bet365 Stadium by claiming three individual awards, including the two most prestigious, ‘Fans Player of the Season’ and ‘Players Player of the Season’.

The stopper, who arrived as back up to the likes of Jack Butland and Shay Given last summer, was propelled into action following injuries to the aforementioned pair, and made a huge contribution to the Potters’ 2016/17 season.

Speaking to Stoke City Player, the 34-year-old said: “It’s quite an incredible night for me, and to be honest one that I never envisaged when I arrived here a few hours ago.

“My remit when I walked through the doors here last summer was to provide competition for the other goalkeepers here, so to have won these awards is quite unbelievable really.

“It’s been an incredible season for me personally, and it just shows that hard work does pay off, because a year or so ago I was at a club that I had huge affection for and I wasn’t even making the bench.

“So I have to thank this football club enormously for giving me this opportunity, and hopefully by winning these three awards, it is a way of me paying back the faith they showed in me by bringing me here in the first place.”

Grant wasn’t the only member of Mark Hughes’ first-team party toasted at the glitzy ceremony, sponsored by Novus, as the likes of Peter Crouch, Bruno Martins Indi and Xherdan Shaqiri were also recognised for their contributions throughout the term, both on and off the field.

Crouch was the recipient of the ‘Top Goal Scorer’ award after chipping in with nine efforts, one of which was his landmark 100th Premier League goal, a feat that earned him the ‘Special Achievement’ gong.

He said: “It’s been a great evening for me, and to be walking home with two awards is fantastic - I certainly didn’t expect to be in this position prior to the start of the season.

“This Club has been very kind to me over the years, and I am very pleased to be here - I wouldn’t have wanted to have scored my 100th Premier League goal anywhere else!”

Dutch international Martins Indi, who arrived in North Staffordshire on loan from FC Porto last summer, was the deserving winner of the ‘Community Champion’ award following his outstanding work within the local area.

Clearly something close to his heart, the 24-year-old revealed that he talks huge satisfaction from giving back to the community.

“I think it is very important to give back to the community, so to have this award is really beautiful,” he said.

“As soon as I get asked to do these sort of things I am always happy to do it - I really see the benefits of it and understand how important it is for people like me to do it.

“I remember as a youngster meeting famous celebrities and sports people who lived in my area, and it really inspired me to be successful, and hopefully I do the same for young people in this community.”

Meanwhile, Shaqiri made it a ‘Goal of the Season’ double after reclaiming the silverware for a second successive term, with his stunning strike in the 3-1 home victory over Hull City earning him the title.

“I think there have been so many beautiful goals this season, although I would have liked to have scored more.

“The goals I scored were beautiful though, and I think the goal against Hull City, at home, was the best of the bunch.”

There was also recognition for Academy starlets Tom Edwards (Under 18 Player of the Season) and Lewis Banks (Under 23 Player of the Season), whilst John Kirkman and Philip Harrison were the joint winners of the ‘Supporter of the Year’ award.
 
2016/17 Awards Winners:

COMMUNITY CHAMPION
Sponsored by: KMF Precision Sheet Metal
Winner: Bruno Martins Indi

STOKE CITY SUPPORTERS BRANCHES’ PLAYER OF THE SEASON
Sponsored by: N/A
Winner: Lee Grant

TOP GOALSCORER
Sponsored by: Wrights Pies
Winner: Peter Crouch

FANS OF THE SEASON
Sponsored by: Carlsberg
Winner: John & Philip

GOAL OF THE SEASON
Sponsored by: Q-Railing
Winner: Xherdan Shaqiri (v Hull City (H))

UNDER-18S PLAYER OF THE SEASON
Sponsored by: N/A
Winners: Tom Edwards

UNDER-23S PLAYER OF THE SEASON
Sponsored by: Marstons
Winner: Lewis Banks

PLAYERS PLAYER OF THE SEASON
Sponsored by: Leek United Building Society
Winner: Lee Grant

PLAYER OF THE SEASON
Sponsored by: bet365
Winner: Lee Grant

SPECIAL ACHIEVEMENT
Sponsored by: Listers
Winner: Peter Crouch (100 Premier League goals)

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