Bayern Munich's Sadio Mane beats Mo Salah to African Player of the Year award

Sadio Mane in action [Reuters]

Sadio Mane was on Thursday named as the African Football of the Year ahead of Liverpool's Mohamed Salah and Chelsea's Edouard Mendy in the voting.

It was the second time the 30-year-old Mane, who last month joined German champions Bayern Munich, has won the award.

Mane scored 23 goals for Liverpool last season to help them win the FA Cup and EFL Cup.

At international level, Mane inspired Senegal to glory in the Africa Cup of Nations in February. He scored the winning spot-kick as his nation defeated Salah's Egypt on penalties in the final.

Six weeks later, he struck the decisive spot-kick as Senegal again edged Egypt in a penalty shootout to win a place at the World Cup finals in Qatar.

He overshadowed Salah on both occasions, although the pair shared success with Liverpool in the FA Cup and League Cup and helped them reach the Champions League final.

Mane also finished ahead of Salah in the 2019 voting. Salah previously won the illustrious prize in 2017 and 2018 with Mane second on both occasions.

"I dedicate this award to the youth of Senegal. I'm very emotional and don't have the words to express how I'm feeling," Mane told the audience at the CAF awards in Rabat after flying in from Washington DC, where he scored in a pre-season friendly for his new club on Wednesday.

Mendy, who plays for Chelsea, was named the best goalkeeper in the world at FIFA’s 2021 award, held in January.

Previous winners include Riyad Mahrez, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Yaya Toure, Samuel Eto'o, Didier Drogba and George Weah.

Aliou Cisse of Senegal won men’s coach of the year.

Asisat Oshoala of Nigeria won the CAF women’s player of the year for a record fifth time. The 27-year-old Barcelona forward dedicated her award to her national team.

 

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