Fantasy Football: Five African stars

Before the start of the 2019/20 UEFA Champions League, UEFA.com singles out five African players to look out for in #UCLfantasy.

Will Mohamed Salah shine for Liverpool again?
Will Mohamed Salah shine for Liverpool again? ©Getty Images

Before the start of the 2019/20 UEFA Champions League, UEFA.com singles out five African players to look out for in #UCLfantasy.

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Mohamed Salah (Liverpool) – €11.0m

Priced as #UCLfantasy's most expensive midfielder alongside Eden Hazard and Raheem Sterling, Salah is well deserving of the price tag after being the top point-scoring midfielder in each of the past two seasons. Throughout 2017/18 and 2018/19, the Egyptian scored 16 goals and registered four assists as Liverpool made it to back-to-back UEFA Champions League finals. As a frequent penalty and corner taker, Salah has multiple avenues to record attacking returns and the Anfield club are sure to look to the Egyptian to inspire them once again this season.

Sadio Mané (Liverpool) – €10.5m

An integral part of Liverpool's recent success in Europe, only Mané's club-mate Salah has scored more UEFA Champions League goals amongst midfielders over the past two seasons. While Salah has 16 goals to Mané's 14, it is the Senegalese international who has been the more creative of the two, registering six assists to Salah's four. As Liverpool look to defend the trophy they won in Madrid back in June, Mané will be aiming to recapture his 2017/18 goalscoring form, when he scored ten goals.

Hakim Ziyech (Ajax) – €8.0m

Having joined Ajax in 2016/17, Ziyech enjoyed a breakout year for the club in 2018/19, scoring 16 times in 29 league matches as Ajax went on to win the Eredivisie. Ziyech carried his league form across into the UEFA Champions League and was a vital component in Ajax's remarkable run to the 2018/19 semi-finals. His three goals and three assists in 985 minutes of action meant the Moroccan recorded an attacking return just under every two matches played.

Maxwel Cornet (Lyon) – €7.0m

Priced at just €7.0m, Cornet is certainly one to keep an eye on. Despite starting just two UEFA Champions League matches last season, Cornet still managed to register three goals and the Ivory Coast winger will be looking to increase his number of starts and minutes this time around. If he can maintain his strike-rate as he sees more pitch time, Cornet will represent excellent value for his price tag.

Riyad Mahrez (Manchester City) – €8.5m

The current Algerian captain, Mahrez has had a fantastic summer after leading his country to victory in the 2019 CAF Africa Cup of Nations. Mahrez made his debut in the UEFA Champions League for Leicester City in 2016/17, leaving his mark on the tournament with four goals as his side reached the quarter-finals for the first time in their history. Now a key player for Josep Guardiola and Manchester City, Mahrez enjoyed a fine campaign in 2018/19, scoring one goal and assisting four others as City also reached the last eight.

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