The 2019/20 football season in Europe just like in any other part of the world has been unusual due to the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic that paralyzed all sports activities across the globe. Major European football leagues like the Premier League in England, La Liga in Spain, Serie A in Italy, Bundesliga in Germany and League 1 in France have attracted a huge following of fans from the African continent given a good number of African stars who play in these leagues.
Having started well back in August 2019, most European football leagues were forced to halt their campaigns in March 2020 in order to control the rapid spread of the pandemic. After more than 3 months of inactivity, our favorite European football leagues were able to restart in an effort to complete the season and determine champions, relegation, promotions, among others.
Following the completion of the 2019/20 football season in these major European leagues, we take a look at some of the African stars who have been outstanding by leading their clubs to several achievements
1. Sadio Mane – Liverpool
The Senegalese international has been outstanding for Premier League Champions Liverpool whom he has helped to win their first Premier League title in 30 years. Mane has become a very important member in the Liverpool squad contributing both goals and assists for the team as well as tracking back to defend. Mane was involved in 25 Premier League goals of Liverpool last season, scoring 18 and providing 7 assists which was a good follow up of his tally last season in which he finished as joint top scorer in the league with 22 goals.
2. Mohamad Salah – Liverpool
Like Mane, Salah was also very instrumental in Liverpool’s record season helping them to win their first ever Premier League trophy. The Egyptian finished the season as Liverpool’s top scorer with 19 goals and 10 assists. He was also joint top scorer in the league last season with 22 goals alongside his teammate Mane and Arsenal’s Pierre Emerick Aubameyang.
3. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang – Arsenal
After finishing last season as joint league top scorer with 22 goals, the Gabon international started this season from where he had stopped. He finished the season with 22 goals and 3 assists in the league falling just 1 goal short of Jamie Vardy who won the golden boot with 23 goals. Aubameyang also played a key role in Arsenal’s win of the FA Cup after scoring both goals to defeat Chelsea 2-1 in the final at Wembley stadium. The Gunners’ skipper has also been voted as the club’s player of the season to reward his efforts for the north London club.
4. Thomas Partey – Atletico Madrid
The Ghana international has played an integral in for Atletico Madrid in Spain helping them to finish third in La Liga and to reach Champions League quarter final. Partey was heavily praised for his outstanding performance when Atletico knocked out defending champions Liverpool out Champions League in the round of 16. Partey’s impressive form this season has seen him being linked to a move to Arsenal in the Premier League who have prioritized him for a defensive midfielder position.
5. Ansu Fati – Barcelona
Fati has enjoyed a stellar breakthrough campaign with Spanish giants Barcelona making 24 appearances, scoring 7 goals and providing one assist. The 17-year old Guinea Bissau international has been representing Spain at youth levels but also qualifies to play for his parent country Bissau.
6. Maxwel Cornet – Olympique Lyon
The Ivory Coast international has had a brilliant campaign with the French giants who are still in the Champions League facing Bayern Munich in the semi final. Lyon were 7th in the league when the campaign was cancelled in April due to Coronavirus. Cornet was very instrumental for Lyon in the Quarter Final clash against Manchester City and he scored one of the 3 goals that knocked out the English giants.
7. Youseff En-Nesyri – Sevilla
The Moroccan forward has been a key member in Sevilla’s season helping them to finish fourth in La Liga and leading them to the Europa League final in which they will face Italian giants Inter Milan.
8. Yassine Bounou – Sevilla
Bounou has also played a key role in Sevilla’s success this season after helping them to fourth place finish La Liga despite just being on loan from Girona. The Moroccan international has also been very solid in helping Sevilla to reach the Europa League final.