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Klopp equally proud of Mane and co. after Van Dijk's PFA Player of the Year triumph

11:01 IST 29/04/2019
Sadio Mane, Virgil van Dijk, Liverpool
The Senegal international was also shortlisted for the individual award but was beaten to it by his teammate

After singing the praise of PFA Player of the Year Virgil van Dijk, Liverpool coach Jurgen Klopp stated that he has ‘exactly the same pride’ for Sadio Mane, Andy Robertson and Trent Alexander-Arnold.

Van Dijk beat his teammate Mane, Manchester City trio Bernardo Silva, Raheem Sterling and Sergio Aguero, and Chelsea star Eden Hazard to see the accolade retained on the Merseyside, after Mohamed Salah’s triumph last year.

Mane - whose 20 goals have been crucial to the Reds’ drive towards the Premier League title - made up for the disappointment of not winning the much-coveted individual prize with a spot in the PFA Team of the Year.

And joining him was winner Van Dijk, left-back Robertson and right-back Alexander-Arnold; a feat that warms Klopp’s heart.

“I have exactly the same pride for Sadio, Robbo and Trent because we all know in the moment we have a pretty special group of players here together,” said Klopp in a video message played at the PFA Awards ceremony in London.

“That all gave you the opportunity to play the season you played. You deserve the award, no doubt about that, but I think you agree there could have been three, four, five, six more players in the Team of the Year with a Liverpool shirt on.

“But because City play a good season as well, it’s OK that a few of them are in the team!”

Mane and Liverpool shift their attention to a Uefa Champions League semi-final date with Barcelona at Camp Nou on Wednesday.

On the international scene, though, his Senegal side have been drawn into Group C at the Africa Cup of Nations, which kicks off on June 21 in Egypt.

The Teranga Lions will begin their Afcon campaign against Tanzania in Cairo, before meeting Algeria and Kenya as they look to reach the knockout stages.

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