Riyad Mahrez named BBC African Footballer of the Year

Riyad Mahrez named BBC African Footballer of the Year

Leicester City's Algerian superstar has beaten off Premier League competition to claim this year's prestigious award.

daniel-orme
Daniel Orme

PFA Player of the Year, Riyad Mahrez has been named the BBC African Footballer of the Year for 2016.

Claiming the prestigious trophy, voted for by supporters around the world, the Algerian winger has beaten off tough competition from the likes of Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Sadio Mane, Yaya Toure and Andre Ayew.

Respected award

The annual award, that has been running for 25 years since 1991, has previously been awarded to superstars of the modern game and now Mahrez has joined that star-studded list. The likes of Jay-Jay Okocha, Didier Drogba and Yaya Toure have all taken the award home in the past and supporters will hope that the Algerian continues to emulate the trio.

Having already picked up numerous awards throughout the year for his outstanding contribution to Leicester City's Premier League-winning campaign, the 25-year-old has again added to his trophy cabinet by being awarded this particular accolade.

Deserved?

Alongside Borussia Dortmund's Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Mahrez was one of the stand-out favourites to win the award. The former Le Havre wide-man was one of the key figures as Claudio Ranieri's Leicester City romped to the Premier League title in 2016.

Notching 11 goals and managing eight assists in all competitions, he has been a key figure for the Foxes. Utilising breath-taking skill and eye-catching vision, Mahrez has developed into one of the most sought-after players in the whole of the Premier League.

However, Mahrez's performances hasn't halted in just league play. Participating in the Foxes' first-ever campaign in the UEFA Champions League, he was one of the most impressive players in the group stages as the East-Midlanders qualified for the next round as group winners.

Elsewhere, Mahrez has also been named in the countdown for the Ballon D'Or, finishing seventh overall, with Leicester City team-mate Jamie Vardy one place behind in eighth.

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