“My father always pushed me to fight for my dreams, I owe him a lot for everything,” said Modric, whose silky midfield skills helped Real to a third straight European crown and then propelled Croatia to the World Cup final.
“It’s an incredible moment for me, I feel really excited and proud of this great award,” said the 32-year-old, who started out at Dinamo Zagreb and then had four years with Tottenham before Real prised him away six years ago.
Modric, who is also favourite to win Ballon d’Or world player of the year accolade, came ahead of former Real teammate Cristiano Ronaldo and Liverpool’s talisman Mohamed Salah for the overall award.
Real Madrid’s claiming the Champions League for the third season consecutively was further recognised as Modric also won the UEFA award for the best midfielder of last season.
Sergio Ramos was named best defender while Real shot stopper Keylor Navas won the best goalkeeper prize.
Ronaldo was awarded the award for best striker chosen by Champions League and Europa League coaches from last season and journalists although was absent.
There was also an award for David Beckham also was awarded the UEFA President’s Award for his achievements in the game and his work since retiring as a player.