Jordan Ayew, the Ghana international, has bagged a hat-trick of awards at Crystal Palace’s end-of-year awards.
The 28-year-old was voted the club’s Player of the Season for his starring performances in the 2019/20 season.
Ayew was the Eagles’ main source of goals, ending the campaign with an impressive nine Premier League goals and two assists.
For his reward, the striker was also voted the Players’ Player of the Season, and his brilliant solo striker against West Ham United in December clinched him the Goal of the Season award.
Chapeau to Pape Diouf
Ayew described his hat-trick of awards as “a really, really big moment”, and decided to dedicate them to Pape Diouf, the former president of the French side Olympique Marseille.
Diouf died on 31 March in Dakar after contracting the novel coronavirus disease in his home country. He was the first person known to have succumbed to COVID-19 in Senegal.
The forward regards the late football administrator as his godfather, the Senegalese having mentored him during his formative years at Marseille.
“When I have this type of award, I think about one man that has been so influential in my football career, Pape Diouf,” Ayew said.
“He passed away during the period of COVID and I wish he was still here for me to present him this award.
“He was so influential in my football career. He was the one who opened the doors for me in my football career.
“He was more than a father and I would like to thank him very much because, if it wasn’t for him, I wouldn’t be where I am today.”
In a statement, the Ghana Football Association (GFA) congratulated the Crystal Palace forward on his latest feats.
Ayew’s impressive goal return this season also allowed him to overtake Tony Yeboah as Ghana’s all-time top scorer in the Premier League, with 25 goals.
A statement posted on the GFA’s Twitter page said: “Congratulations to Black Stars forward @jordan_ayew9. Keep making our nation proud and continue soaring higher.”
The Black Stars coach, C K Akonnor, also tweeted: “Congratulations to you @jordan_ayew9 for winning Crystal Palace’s Player of the Season, Players’ Player and Goal of the Season. Well deserved, keep it up.”
— CK Akonnor (@akonnor_ck) July 29, 2020
Ayew joined Crystal Palace from Swansea City in January 2019 and, despite struggling in the early months, has developed into one of the club’s most valuable players.
E A Alanore