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What Salah's UEFA Men's POTY nomination means

What Mohamed Salah's UEFA Men's Player of the Year Award nomination means for Africa

August 20, 2018 By Emmanuel K. Budu-Annor
The Egyptian forward was named alongside Cristiano Ronaldo and Luka Modric in a three-man shortlist by UEFA.

Mohammed Salah has been rewarded with a nomination for this year's UEFA Men's Player of the Year Award after impressing in the 2017/2018 season. The 26-year-old Egyptian, alongside Roberto Firmino and Sadio Mane in an attacking triad, contributed a hefty chunk of goals in Liverpool's running to the UEFA Champions League final.

Having suffered an injury to his shoulder in the preliminary stage of the clash with Los Blancos, Salah was forced to watch his team slump to a 3-1 defeat, consequently ending his campaign in Europe with an 11-goal tally after 13 appearances. That, together with his 33 goals scored across the English domestic league as well as cup games, placed the former AS Roma forward just three goals shy of breaking Ian Rush's record seasonal haul for Liverpool.

In many sense, his inclusion is justified although Lionel Messi's omission for the third time since the award's inception came off as erroneous and a huge surprise to many. Despite failing to replicate his form for his club side at the 2018 World Cup for Egypt, Salah's nomination is one that will be celebrated among the fan base of the Pharaohs and the African continent as a whole.

This is primarily due to the fact that the Liverpool forward has secured a place in the history books as the first African player to be nominated among the final three for the UEFA Men's Player of the Year accolade. Much interestingly, the 26-year-old forward is also the first player from the English Premier League to be shortlisted for the award.

With the odd's favoring Luka Modric to win the accolade for the vital roles he played in firing Real Madrid to a third successive Champions League trophy and Croatia to the silver medal at the 2018 FIFA World Cup, Mohammed Salah's nomination is indeed a great accomplishment already.

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