Pelé congratulates Mohamed Salah on POTY award

Doug Mendoza
April 25, 2018

Ultimately, I voted for Salah, despite De Bruyne playing a huge role in City's Premier League title success this season.

Salah's numbers put him alongside the pair, and his level of performance has been exceptional nearly every week.

Veteran Daniele De Rossi was a World Cup victor with Italy in 2006 and forms a solid midfield base with Belgium worldwide Radja Nainggolan and Dutchman Kevin Strootman.

Salah has surpassed all expectations since his then-club record 42 million-euro (£37 million, $52 million) move back to the Premier League last June and will face his old club in the first leg of Liverpool's Champions League semi-final on Tuesday. "Thankfully the club gave me the chance to do it and I enjoy it a lot".

"City would not be dominating in the Premier League without De Bruyne's vision and desire to take the game to the opposition".

"But I do understand probably a lot of people would have thought this semi-final would be Barcelona v Manchester City - but it is not because it is football. I always think about the team, I don't think about myself, so the most important thing for me is to win something with the team", he added.

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But City winger Leroy Sane was voted PFA young player of the year. This is Liverpool's first opportunity in nine years to claim the most prized trophy in European football.

Liverpool, it is safe to assume, would not be in the top four or challenging for a place in the Champions League without Salah's 41 goals in all competitions.

Chelsea's Marcos Alonso, whose inclusion was perhaps the biggest surprise, saw off competition from Liverpool's Andrew Robertson who had a fine second half of the season.

All of this - not to mention Salah's previous stint in England or, for that matter, his time in Serie A - has led to the feeling we're seeing some kind of extended magic trick.

The Egypt worldwide saw off competition from the Manchester City trio of Kevin De Bruyne, Leroy Sane and David Silva to become the second African player to win the award after Riyad Mahrez of Leicester in 2016.

De Gea, Walker, Otamendi, Vertonghen, Alonso, De Bruyne, Eriksen, D. Silva, Salah, Kane, Aguero.

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