Carragher reveals dirty tricks in PFA vote
Former Liverpool defender Jamie Carragher has revealed that tactical voting comes into play when the ballot sheets are filled out to crown the PFA Player of the Year.
Chelsea's Eden Hazard is the favourite to collect the prestigious award in London next weekend, with Tottenham's Harry Kane and Manchester United's David De Gea believed to be his chief rivals.
Yet after Chelsea skipper John Terry has revealed that he has voted for Liverpool's Philippe Coutinho to win the PFA's top prize, Carragher suggested in his Daily Mail column that devious tricks are played by teams when one of their own players is in the mix to win the award.
"Eden Hazard is the hot favourite but whoever wins will have plenty of tactical voting to thank," declared Carragher.
"John Terry recently revealed he had chosen Liverpool midfielder Philippe Coutinho — who has been very good but not great — as his nomination.
"There’s no way Terry can seriously believe Coutinho has been better than De Gea and Kane this season! There is more to it than meets the eye.
"John, I am almost certain, will have gone around Chelsea’s dressing room when the ballot papers came in and told the squad — given that you cannot choose one of your team-mates — under no circumstances should they vote for De Gea or Kane, who are Hazard’s biggest challengers.
"I’m sure the same happened in the Spurs and United dressing rooms. How do I know this? I did exactly the same thing in 2006 when Steven Gerrard won!
"I was Liverpool’s PFA representative back then and I made it clear that, for Stevie to win, nobody should vote for Thierry Henry or Frank Lampard!
"You might think that’s unfair but it is the same in every dressing room."
Whether tactical votes will be decisive or not, it seems that Hazard has the Player of the Year award in his back pocket, with bookies installing the Belgian as an odds-on favourite to win the award.
PFA PLAYER OF THE YEAR ODDS
Eden Hazard (Chelsea) 1/7
Harry Kane (Tottenham) 10/3
David De Gea (Manchester United) 20/1
Alexis Sanchez (Arsenal) 25/1
Philippe Coutinho (Liverpool) 50/1
Diego Costa (Chelsea) 60/1