After beating Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Andre Ayew, Sadio Mane and Yaya Toure to the
BBC African Footballer of the Year 2016, Algerian Riyad Mahrez has dedicated the award to Algerian fans.
The Leicester City midfielder was voted by fans from across the world on the BBC Sport forum to the 2016 gong following his heroics with both The Desert Foxes and the English champions.
“I want to thank the Algeria fans and dedicate this to them as well and for my family,” he told BBC Sport before revealing what the award means to him as a player and thanked the fans who made it possible.
It means a lot; it’s something big for African players so I am very happy, I am very proud. It’s always good to receive awards and for African players it’s a huge honour. To all the fans, thank you very much.
He added: “”I just have to carry on and keep going with my football and see what I can do.”
The year 2016 has been exceptional for the Algerian who guided his nation to the finals of the 2017 Africa Nations Cup due in Gabon next year and also helped Leicester City win their first premier league title.
The winger, signed from France side Le Havre also became the first African to be Voted the PFA Player of the Year.
He scored 17 goals for the Foxes and also assisted 11 times in a fairytale campaign plus he has helped the team qualify for the last 16 of the UEFA Champions League.
Mahrez is also the only African on the 23 man shortlist for the FIFA World Player of the Year.