The Manchester City midfielder put club rivalries to one side as he named the Senegal international as the best player this year
Kevin De Bruyne says Sadio Mane has been “the total package” for Liverpool this year, and would be his Premier League Player of the Season.
The annual Professional Footballers’ Association (PFA) Awards would have been scheduled to take place on Sunday, April 26, but have naturally been postponed along with the rest of the campaign.
Mane has registered 14 goals and nine assists in the Premier League so far this year, and has been one of Jurgen Klopp’s star performers throughout their title challenge.
Asked on BT Sport who would be his pick for the individual award, De Bruyne said: “I would say Mane.
“I think he has been the total package this year for Liverpool.
“He has been important, so if I had to choose somebody, I would choose Mane.”
De Bruyne himself was among the favourites for the award prior to the disruption of the coronavirus outbreak, with a combined 25 goals and assists in the Premier League.
The list of favourites was, of course, dominated by Liverpool players, with Klopp’s side still 25 points clear as the season hangs in the balance.
Mane’s relentless attacking performances meant he was many people’s favourite to win the award but captain Jordan Henderson and last year’s winner Virgil van Dijk were also in the running.
Despite their dominance of the domestic scene this season, however, Mane has been clear that their incredible title charge hasn’t been easy.
“Easy? Oh, I wish,” Mane told BBC Sport before the season was interrupted.
“We know the Premier League is the best league in the world and every single game you have to give 100% if you want to win.
“It’s what we always try and I think it’s working very well but we have to keep working hard to get what we want.
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“Our target from the beginning was to win the league, so if we win it, it will be great for the club and for the fans.”
Mane has seen his own personal output grow year-on-year since joining Liverpool from Southampton in 2016.
He scored 13 goals in all competitions in his first campaign, 20 in his second and 26 last season as his side went agonisingly close to a league and Champions League double.