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'A great honour'

Mandzukic named Croatian player of the year

Mario Mandzukic is certain to look back on this particular Saturday evening with great pleasure. He contributed impressively to Bayern’s 2-1 victory over Leverkusen by scoring the crucial opening goal - and after the match he was honoured as Croatian player of the year for the second time in a row! “It’s a great honour for me,” the striker told fcbayern.de, “I’m very proud about the award and it’s a great endorsement of all my hard work.“

Mandzukic was presented with the trophy directly after the final whistle at the Allianz Arena by Croatia’s biggest newspaper Vecernji list. Just like last year the 27-year-old beat fellow Croatia team-mate Luka Modric of Real Madrid into second place. The jury for the vote for the Croatian player of the year comprises 11 former internationals.

Mandzukic made the headlines on Saturday, not only in Croatia but also in Munich. His powerful headed goal against Leverkusen was his 17th in the Bundesliga this season and takes him to the top of the league scoring chart. “Obviously I’m inspired by the thought of finishing as top scorer, but winning the league title is more important,“ Mandzukic said.

In the Leverkusen clash the FCB hitman scored for the sixth game in a row, a new personal best for him. His current total of 17 goals already beats his previous best for a season of 15 goals in total. Treble winner Mandzukic is currently in top form, and the award for the Croatian player of the year is in this respect no surprise.

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