Pukki and Buendia nominated for Championship player-of-the-season
- Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd
Norwich City's deadly duo, Teemu Pukki and Emi Buendia, will battle it out with Brentford's Ivan Toney after being shortlisted for the prestigious Championship player-of-the-season.
Pukki lifted the prize two seasons ago and his 25 league goals puts him in the reckoning this time around for the champions-elect.
Buendia notched his 14th goal and served up his 16th assist of a superb campaign in Saturday's 3-1 league win over QPR, which has carried Daniel Farke's squad to the brink of the title.
Bees' hotshot Toney is the only man ahead of Pukki in the current league goal charts, after plundering 29 in a debut Championship tour for the play-off chasing Bees.
The winners will be announced on Thursday evening in a ceremony broadcast live by Sky Sports.
The City duo's club mate, Max Aarons, is again shortlisted for the young player-of-the-season he also won two seasons ago. But the England Under-21 starlet faces stiff competition from Blackburn's on loan Liverpool wide player, Harvey Elliot, and Reading's Michael Olise.
Former Norwich stalwart, Wes Hoolahan, has made the League Two shortlist following an influential season for title-chasing Cambridge United in League Two.
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The citation released by the Football League for the Championship's top individual prize reads: 'The shortlist features two of Norwich City’s promotion-winning side, with Teemu Pukki and Emi Buendia chosen alongside the division’s top goalscorer, Brentford’s Ivan Toney.
'Two ever present players central to Daniel Farke’s entertaining brand of football, Pukki’s goals have once again fired the club to success as he looks to win this award for a second time after collecting the prize in 2019, while Buendia’s all-round brilliance has captivated supporters across the division, especially those in yellow.
'Pukki currently sits in second place at the top of the goalscoring charts on 25 goals, whilst Buendia has 28 goal contributions to his name, including a division-high 15 assists.
'Standing in the Canaries’ way of claiming the award is a man who has taken the art of goalscoring and made it look relatively simple. After joining Brentford in the summer as a replacement for the outgoing Ollie Watkins, Toney has registered a quite incredible 29 goals and 10 assists in his debut Championship season.'