Competition was fierce for the honour of being the inaugural recipient of this award, named after the iconic former Newcastle United, Wigan and Sunderland defender. However, two names stood above the rest.
In a season where they faced a real threat of relegation for the first time in their history, the last thing Al Ittihad needed was for one of their most experienced defenders making six mistakes leading directly to goals.
خسارة كاس السوبر وخسارة كاس الملك وخسارة الصدارة الاسيوية والمُتسبب : أحمد عسيري .
— عـلاوي (@Mo8yd) May 21, 2019
Luckily for the Saudi giants, for every Ahmed Assiri blooper, there was a Marouane da Costa heroic to save the day and keep them up in the top flight. Assiri’s performances this season were so poor there is little chance he will be at the club come the start of next season.
If Assiri had a nightmare of a season in Jeddah, there is only one man in the entire Middle East who could deny him the award.
Another experienced centre-back and one who was once lauded as a gem of Emirati football. Hamdan Al Kamali has been a ticking time bomb for Al Wahda this season. The 30-year-old received more coloured cards than any other Al Wahda player this season.
It is his comic performance in the 2-4 defeat to Al Dhafra that stood out for Al Kamali, earning him the award. In the Arabian Gulf League fixture back in October, Al Kamali was at fault for two goals before capping off a dreadful night with an own goal. Bramble would be proud!