BUCHAREST (Reuters) - Steaua Bucharest striker Raul Rusescu has been voted Romania’s Footballer of the Year despite playing only once for the national team.
The 24-year-old forward made his Romania debut in the 2014 World Cup qualifier against Andorra in September, coming on as a second-half substitution for his only international appearance.
Rusescu, dubbed “Steaua’s goal-machine” by local media, scored 17 goals since the Romanian league started in July and four goals in the Europa League.
Steaua top the standings in the Balkan country as the championship reached its mid-season break and will meet Ajax Amsterdam in the Europa League’s last-32 tie in February.
Highly-rated Steaua defender Vlad Chiriches was second in the annual poll conducted by the Romanian daily Gazeta Sporturilor and Granada winger Gabriel Torje, who picked up the prize last year, came third.
Ukrainian champions Shakhtar Donetsk’s Mircea Lucescu won the coach’s award ahead of Steaua’s Laurentiu Reghecampf and Dynamo Moscow’s Dan Petrescu.
Writing by Angel Krasimirov; Editing by John Mehaffey