The Egyptian Liverpool striker Mohamed Salah has won the Professional Footballers’ Association Player of the Year award for 2017-18.
The 25 year old beat Kevin de Bruyne, Harry Kane, Leroy Sane, David Silva and David de Gea in the vote by his fellow players.
“It’s an honour and especially as it’s voted by the players. I am happy and proud,” Salah said. “I didn’t have my chance at Chelsea. It was clear I would return and show everyone my football. I think I left and came back a different person, man and player.”
Salah – christened the “Egyptian King” by Liverpool fans – described the achievement as a “big honour.”
“I don’t think about myself,” he said. “The most important thing is to win something with the team and we’re very close now with the semi-final (of the Champions League). Hopefully we’re going to win. The team has helped me a lot because of the way we play. They pass me the ball a lot and always try to find me.”
Salah has scored 31 goals in 33 Premier League games for Liverpool and leads the race for the golden boot.
The £34 million summer signing from Roma is just the fifth player to register more than 40 goal involvements in a single Premier League season (31 goals, nine assists).
Salah has become the first person in Premier League history to claim three Player of the Month awards in the same season, winning it in November, February and March, and was the only member of Liverpool’s squad to be named in the PFA Team of the Year.
In what has been a remarkable year he also scored the goal that took Egypt to the World Cup and reportedly received hundreds of thousands of votes on spoiled ballots in the country’s election.