While he may not have ended the season as a European champion, Pavel Nedved of Juventus was the standout performer of the 2002/03 campaign as the Bianconeri captured the Serie A title.
Zinedine Zidane’s move to Real Madrid made space for the Czech to shine, but it was in his second season in Turin that he really assumed control of creative duties for the Old Lady as they fought to remain champions.
At the beginning of March, the former Lazio star delivered a match winning display against Inter as Juventus won 3-0 at the Stadio delle Alpi and continued to drive them forward to the Scudetto.
It was on the continent where Nedved was arguably more impressive, though, with five goals in 15 appearances to take the Turin club to a Champions League final against AC Milan.
However, despite scoring the vital goal to secure a 4-3 aggregate victory over Real Madrid in the semi-final, a booking during that second-leg ruled the 2003 European Footballer of the Year out of the final in Manchester.
A dour all-Italian final ended goalless after 120 minutes of football and won by the Rossoneri penalties, but is probably better remembered for the spectacle it could have with the Czech on the pitch and not in the stands.