Senegal and Liverpool forward Sadio Mane, together with Nigeria and Barcelona star Asisat Oshoala were crowned as African Player of the Year and African Women’s Player of the Year at the 2019 CAF Awards held at the Albatros Citadel Sahl Hasheesh Resort in Hurghada, Egypt.
The 28th edition of the CAF Awards celebrated African footballers and officials who distinguished themselves during the 2019 season.
Mane was crowned the African Player of the Year, polling 477 votes ahead of his Liverpool teammate Mohamed Salah, 325 votes and Algeria’s Riyad Mahrez, 267 votes.
Mane said: “I’m very happy and proud to win this award. I thank my teammates at the Senegal national team and also my club, Liverpool for their support.”
For the women’s category, Oshoala was named African Women’s Player of the Year for the fourth time, equalling the record of her compatriot Perpetua Nkwocha.
She garnered 351 votes, 30 more than Cameroonian forward Ajara Nchout and Thembi Kgatlana, who had 247 votes.
It’s deserved recognition for all four of Liverpool’s African players as they were all part of the team that eventually lifted Europe’s most sought after piece of silverware – the UEFA Champions League trophy.
It’s hard to ignore his contribution to Algeria’s Africa Cup of Nations success, at the detriment of Mane’s Senegal, and the silverware he picked up with Manchester City last season.
Should Mo Salah have won the award, it would have been his third year on the bounce being named as Africa’s best player, but Mahrez was in with a legit shout.
However, Mo Salah appeared to mock the decision to name Egypt as the best football federation CAF Awards by absconding the event.
The Liverpool star missed the ceremony in his native country and was spotted on Merseyside to train ahead of the Reds’ trip to Tottenham on Saturday.
Salah has been at loggerheads with the Egyptian FA over various issues in the last couple of years, dating back to what he saw as unprofessional goings-on in the Egypt camp at the 2018 World Cup in Russia.
The forward was pictured with the Chechen leader Ramzan Kadyrov in the Egypt camp during the tournament, but later claimed he was forced to do so and wasn’t happy to be associated with someone possessing Kadyrov’s human rights record.
Salah has also been known to be frustrated with some of the Egyptian FA’s views on sponsorship, and has regularly clashed with heads of football in the country.
Cameroon legend Samuel Eto’o partnered Egyptian Mariam Amin as presenters of the ceremony and was assisted by Moroccan Fayrouz Al Karawani as special guests Egyptian Minister of Sport Ashraf Sobhy, FIFA and CAF Legends were treated to a wonderful evening.
The Award Winners
*Player of the Year: Sadio Mane (Senegal & Liverpool)
*Women’s Player of the Year: Asisat Oshoala (Nigeria & Barcelona)
*Interclubs Player of the Year: Youcef Belaïli (Algeria & Esperance/Ahli Jeddah)
*Youth Player of the Year: Achraf Hakimi (Morocco & Borussia Dortmund)
*Men’s Coach of the Year: Djamel Belmadi (Algeria & Algeria)
*Women’s Coach of the Year: Desiree Ellis (South Africa)
*Men’s National Team of the Year: Algeria
*Women’s National Team of the Year: Cameroon
*Club President of the Year: Moise Katumbi (TP Mazembe)
*Federation of the Year: Egyptian Football Association
*Goal of the Year: Riyad Mahrez (Algeria vs Nigeria, Africa Cup of Nations Egypt 2019 semi final)
*Special Award: Kojovi Obilale (former Togolese goalkeeper)
CAF-Fifpro Best XI
Goalkeeper: Andre Onana
Defenders: Achraf Hakimi, Serge Aurier, Joel Matip, Kalidou Koulibaly
Midfielders: Idrissa Gueye, Riyad Mahrez, Hakim Ziyech
Forwards: Mohamed Salah, Sadio Mane, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang. —Additional reporting by mirror.co.uk