Asia 50, Part III: A host of European-based superstars and a brand new No.1
No.2 Son Heung-Min
“He can use his left foot, his right foot - he’s a quality player!” enthused Tottenham teammate Kieran Trippier recently about Son Heung-Min, No.2 on our list for the second consecutive season.
Already an accomplished talent, the South Korean has taken his game to a new level in 2016/17 for a Spurs outfit that pushed Chelsea all the way in a tight English Premier League race.
With Harry Kane injured, he stepped up to fill the void, taking his tally past double figures for the season.
“He’s one of the players that have stood up and made things happen for Tottenham,” said former Spur Jermaine Jenas.
ASIA 50, 2017
Having finished first, second and now second again in three additions of the Asia 50, if he continues his current form he could surely take out the top prize once more next year.
He is also reportedly in line for a new and improved deal with Tottenham after his tremendous campaign.
Who knows, maybe next year he could also add the title Premier League champion. – Tio Utomo
No.1 Omar Abdulrahman
It is testament to the shaggy-haired star that six or seven years after he burst onto the scene, he is still regarded as the most exciting talent in Asia.
That is because few, if any, on the continent have the ability to change a game like the Al Ain ace.
The 2016 AFC Player of the Year led his club to the final of the 2016 Asian Champions League only to lose by the narrowest of margins, 1-0 to Korean giants Jeonbuk Hyundai.
World Cup qualification started excellently too and Al Ain finished the UAE pro league as runners-up.
If club and country could have gone that little bit further then it would have been the perfect year.
When the 25-year-old plays well, he can lift his team to a whole different level.
The question for the star with time still on his side, and who is still being watched by many European giants, is how far he can go. – John Duerden
That's the end of this year's countdown, but there is still much more content to come. Keep checking back each day and join the conversation using the hashtag #FFTASIA50