Benfica footballers Alex Grimaldo and João Félix are among the top 18 players in the 2018/19 Europa League, whose final was won by Chelsea FC on Wednesday.
The choice was made by the observers’ panel of the governing body of European football in a group that includes only players from the finalists, Chelsea and Arsenal, the Germans of Eintracht Frankfurt, eliminated in the semi-finals, and Benfica.
The Portuguese champion team began their Champions League season, a competition that fell to the Europa League in which they took away Galatasaray and Dinamo Zagreb before being eliminated by Frankfurt.
John Félix, one of the chosen players of UEFA, has been in six European League games, including one as a substitute and the other holders, and scored a hat trick in the 4-2 win over Eintracht in Stadium da Luz, in the first leg of the quarterfinals.
The player, from the formation of the club, became, at 19, the youngest Portuguese player to make three goals in a game of European competitions.
Left-back Grimaldo made five appearances in the Europa League and in the only game in which he was a substitute he scored one of the goals in the win against Dinamo Zagreb 3-0 after extra time.
Chelsea, who beat Arsenal 4-1 in the final, have eight players in the group chosen by UEFA, followed by Eintracht Frankfurt with five, Arsenal with three, and Benfica with two.
List of 18 players selected by the UEFA technical panel:
– Goalkeepers: Kevin Trapp (Eintracht Frankfurt / Ale) and Kepa Arrizabalaga (Chelsea / Ing).
– Defenders: Alex Grimaldo (Benfica), Sead Kolasinac (Arsenal / Ing), Laurent Koscielny (Arsenal / Ing), David Luiz (Chelsea / Ing), César Azpilicueta (Chelsea / Eng) and Danny da Costa (Eintracht Frankfurt).
– Midfielders: Makoto Hasebe (Eintracht Frankfurt / Ale), Filip Kostic (Eintracht Frankfurt / Ale), Jorginho (Chelsea / Ing) and N’Golo Kanté (Chelsea / Eng).
– Advanced: Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (Arsenal), Olivier Giroud (Chelsea / Ing), Luka Jovic (Eintracht Frankfurt), João Félix (Benfica / Eng), Pedro Rodriguez (Chelsea / Eng) and Eden Hazard.