Senegal and Liverpool forward Sadio Mane was awarded the African best player 2019 at an event in the Egyptian city of Hurghada on January 7. He became the final awardee for the decade 2010 – 2019.
He succeeds Liverpool teammate Mohamed Salah who was also shortlisted along with Manchester City’s Riyad Mahrez who led Algeria to AFCON glory in 2019. Both contenders were absent at the ceremony.
Mane received the award from the president of the Confederation of African Football, CAF, Ahmad Ahmad. On stage was the first award winner for the decade, Samuel Eto’o of Cameroon won his fourth award in 2010 when he was with Italian side Inter Milan.
Mane helped his club side win the UEFA Champions League in the 2018/2019 season and was captain of the Senegal side that lost the 2019 AFCON to Algeria in Egypt.
This was the fourth straight time that he had been shortlisted for the award. He lost in 2016 to Gabons Aubameyang (at the time with Dortmund). Then missed out to Salah twice in 2017 and 2018. Many analysts projected after the AFCON that this was his year despite the final loss.
The final African best player for the last decade (2010 – 2019) will be decided tonight in Egypt’s Hurghada at the annual Confederation of African Football (CAF) Awards.
All winners in the different categories will represent a special group, the final awardees for the decade. As usual, all eyes are on the African Footballer of the Year award.
The CAF shortlist released in December 2019 revealed the top three contenders in the category as: Liverpool pair Sadio Mane (Senegal) and Mohamed Salah (Egypt), plus Riyad Mahrez from Manchester City (Algeria).
Who won what on the night:
12. African Player of the Year: Sadio Mane, Senegal / Liverpool11. Best Women’s Player of the Year: Asisat Oshoala, Nigeria / Barcelona FC10. African club president of the Year: Moise Katumbi, CEO of TP Mazembe9. Federation of the Year: Egyptian Football Association8. Djamel Belmadi: Men’s African Coach of the Year7. Diseree Ellis: Women’s African Coach of the Year6. Special Award: Ex-Togolese intl Kodjovi Obilale, victim of 2010 Cabinda massacre5. Goal of the Year: Riyad Mahrez strike against Nigeria in AFCON semis4. Men’s Team – Algeria3. Women’s Team of the Year – Cameroon2. Youth Player of the year – Achraf Hakimi MAR1. Interclub player of the year – Youcef Beilali ALG