Former Arsenal striker Carlos Vela says it is an honour to rival Chelsea striker Diego Costa and Real Madrid superstar Cristiano Ronaldo for the prestigious La Liga striker of the season award.
The Mexican international was the surprise nomination for the award after many observers expected Barcelona superstar Lionel Messi to be amongst the favourites.
However, that’s not to detract from an incredibly successful campaign for the Real Sociedad man as he netted 16 times in 37 La Liga appearances since making his move permanent from the Gunners.
Vela’s rivals for the award include Cristiano Ronaldo and Chelsea’s £32 million summer acquisition Diego Costa following his gluts of goals for former club Atletico Madrid.
The Blues’ new top scorer hit 27 goals in 35 La Liga games as Los Colchoneros stunned their rivals to claim their first title since 1995.
Asked what it feels like to be up against such strong opposition, Vela admits to being proud and honoured before acknowledging the work of his teammates.
"This clearly is a pride and an honour, because just to compete against these players is amazing, and seeing the people who missed out is an award in itself for me,” he said, quoted by the Spanish newspaper AS.
“It is also a prize for the team because here we all play together and we are very happy. Hopefully we can repeat our achievements.”
Vela only represented the Gunners on 29 occasions in the Premier League whilst in North London, scoring a disappointingly low three goals.
One man who has taken to Premier League with ease however is Brazilian-born striker Diego Costa as the 26-year-old has netted nine teams in his first seven matches for the Blues.