Kerr, Mooy claim top gongs at PFA Awards

Australia's elite soccer players have voted Sam Ker and Aaron Mooy as the country's best at the Professional Footballers Australia (PFA) Players' Awards in Newcastle.

The event also honoured Matildas great Cheryl Salisbury, who became the first women's player to receive the Alex Tobin Medal.

The 151-times capped defender joined the likes of the late Johnny Warren and Harry Kewell as a recipient of the players' highest honour.

"I'm very proud to be the first female to win the award and to receive it in my home town with my family and friends with me was a privilege," Salisbury said.

"After having been out of the sport for close to 10 years to be recognised by the current generation is a phenomenal thing."

Kerr's sensational form for club and country in 2017 has resulted in her second PFA Women's Footballer of the Year gong, her first coming in 2013.

"To be voted by your fellow players as the PFA Footballer of the Year is a huge honour," Kerr said.

"I have been fortunate to enjoy so many great experiences with the Matildas and with my clubs over the past 12 months and this just tops it off."

Kerr scored in Australia's 2-1 win over Brazil on Sunday in Penrith, with the Matildas aiming to beat the South Americans for the third time in a row when they meet at Newcastle International Sports Centre on Tuesday night.

A humbled Mooy is the first player to be named PFA Men's Footballer of the Year twice, after claiming the award in 2016.

"These awards are extra special to players because they are voted by your peers," Mooy said.

"I'm very thankful for the support of my family, my club and my teammates at Huddersfield and with the Socceroos and all the players who voted for me."

Socceroos left-back Alex Gersbach and Matildas midfielder Alex Chidiac were recognised as the best young players over the past 12 months.

The inaugural PFA Community Medal went to Western Sydney Wanderers captain Robbie Cornthwaite due to his charity work with Beards of Hope.

The major PFA Players' Awards winners were:

* Cheryl Salisbury, PFA Alex Tobin OAM Medal;

* Aaron Mooy, PFA Men's Footballer of the Year;

* Sam Kerr, PFA Women's Footballer of the Year;

* Alex Gersbach, PFA Harry Kewell Medallist;

* Alex Chidiac, PFA Young Women's Footballer of the Year;

* Robbie Cornthwaite, PFA Community Medallist.

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