Sadio Mané of Senegal has finished second as the best African player at the Ballon D’Or 2022 awards. As expected, the winner and successor to Lionel Messi in 2021 was Real Madrid’s French centre-forward Karem Benzema. Sadio Mané was also honoured with the Socrates Prize for his great social commitment.
Liverpool-Ace Mo Salah in the Top 5
In addition to Sadio Mané, several other African players also made it into the top 30. Mané’s long-time Liverpool strike partner Mohamed Salah (Egypt) came in as the second-best African, as 5th. Chelsea attacker Riyad Mahrez (Algeria) finished 12th, one place ahead of goal scorer Sebastien Haller, who holds an Ivory Coast passport. Since his transfer from Ajax Amsterdam to Borussia Dortmund, however, Haller has not yet been able to play a game. He was out due to a testicular tumour
Alexia Putellas of FC Barcelona won the women’s title again. The Spaniard also prevailed in the preliminary round. The best African player in this ranking is the Nigerian Asisat Oshoaia, also from FC Barcelona. She finished in 16th place. In the goalkeeper category, two Africans made it into the top 10: Senegalese Edouard Mendy (Chelsea FC) was awarded 4th best goalkeeper, Moroccan Yassine Bounou (Sevilla FC) came 9th
Lots of talents with Nigerian Roots
In the other award ceremonies, such as the Kopa Trophy for the best young player, no players from the African continent were nominated. However, it was striking how many of the ten young professionals selected had African roots. Eduardo Camavinga (parents from Congo), Jamal Musiala (father from Nigeria), Bukayo Sako (parents from Nigeria), and Karim Adeyemi (father from Nigeria). In view of the missed qualification for the World Cup, Nigeria will certainly have watched with a tearful eye.
Even as a child, I used to bet on the results of the Bundesliga with my friends at school. Back then, the stakes were still modest: Lunch, a few marbles or maybe even a milk jug. When I was 9 years old, I once played the German "Elferwette" (1x2 tips in 11 German games) - and got 10 right the first time.
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By Max Stargard
Even as a child, I started typing the results of the Bundesliga with my friends at school. The stakes were modest back then: The lunch, a few marbles or maybe a milk slice. Then, at the age of 9, I played the penalty bet once - and immediately got 10 right. The previous week I had won 500 DM and in my childish imagination I was already imagining how many football pictures I could buy at the kiosk on the corner. Unfortunately, it was one of those match days when everything turned out as expected and I only won DM 8.10. Nevertheless, I followed the game with great interest.
Nevertheless, the passion to correctly predict the outcome of sporting events haunted me for the rest of my life. I would have loved to own the sports almanac that Marty McFly bought in Back to the Future II.
Much later, when I was already working as a journalist for newspapers and as a writer for television, I came across an international betting forum with over 100,000 members - and found out that a lot of people there were giving their tips on German football, but nobody seemed to have a real clue, so I wrote a few English-language preliminary reports with a few tips - and was right about everything. After that, an avalanche started. I got offers from bookmakers, sports papers and even betting syndicates to work for them - and I accepted a few of them too, experiencing the ups & downs of sports betting and travelling halfway around the world in the years that followed. There I met Chinese multimillionaires betting five to six figures, amateur players in Serbia or Turkey supporting their families with small stakes, South Africans gambling away half their fortune, Brazilians who could only leave their favelha and become rich by making the right tips. At one point my life was similar to Matthew McCaughaney's in the film Two For The Money - and far too much stress.
I subsequently moved to another continent and ran an English-language football epaper about the Bundesliga from there. After the birth of my son, I devoted myself for many years only to artistic projects in the field of photography and literature. However, I am happy to share my knowledge and passion with the readers of bettingtipsafrica.
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