Sadio Mane, winner of the Player of the Year award, shakes hands with CAF†President Ahmad Ahmad during the 2019 CAF Awards ceremony at Albatros Citadel. Photo: Ibrahim Youssef/dpa

Sadio Mane crowned 2019 CAF African Player of the Year

Sadio Mane has been named as the CAF African Player of the Year for 2019, with Mohamed Salah finishing in the top three.

Mane and Salah were both named in the final three for the award, with Man City‘s Riyad Mahrez lining up alongside the Reds duo.

Liverpool’s No. 10 clinched the award, which took place in Egypt, for the first time having finished second in the last two years while coming third in 2016.

It is just rewards for Mane as his exponential rise continues, having proven key to Liverpool’s Champions League, Super Cup, Club World Cup and recent Premier League success.

His 2019 also saw him named as the Premier League‘s joint-highest goalscorer alongside Salah and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang with 22, where his calendar year totalled 31 goals across all competitions for the Reds.

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Saturday, September 14, 2019: Liverpool's Sadio Mane (R) celebrates scoring the second goal with team-mate Mohamed Salah (L) during the FA Premier League match between Liverpool FC and Newcastle United FC at Anfield. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Moreover, Mane helped lead his native Senegal to the final of the Africa Cup of Nations over the summer, where his side fell to a narrow defeat at the hands of Mahrez’s Algeria.

Salah, meanwhile, has relinquished his hold on the title having been named Africa’s best footballer for two years running despite matching Mane’s title haul and netting an impressive 25 goals for Liverpool throughout the year.

For Mane, the award is another nod to his incredible performance and consistency levels for club and country and he is showing no signs of slowing down.

Having finished fourth in the Ballon d’Or, being named the best player in Africa caps off what was a stunning year for Mane – and at his current pace, 2020 could yet be just as memorable and rewarding.

Mane and Salah were also named in the African Best XI, along with Joel Matip, whose imperious form was recognised despite his controversial early retirement from Cameroon duty.