There’s always room to improve and keep working hard – Patson Daka

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Patson Daka admits that he still has a lot to improve in his game.

The Zambian striker is not getting carried away despite an incredible season with Austrian giants Red Bull Salzburg.

Daka enjoyed his most prolific season abroad which saw him finish as the league’s top goal scorer. Salzburg won the Austrian Bundesliga and Austrian Cup with Daka ultimately being voted as the player of the season.

He scored 32 goals across all competitions as Salzburg won their eighth league title in a row to continue their dominance in the domestic scene.

Speaking to BBC Sport Africa, Daka says this is only the beginning for him as he continues to learn and develop into a better player.

“I thank God for a rewarding season, but there’s always room to improve and keep working hard.

“It’s been a memorable and tough campaign. We couldn’t have done it all without a dedicated team and hard working group on and off the pitch.”

His goals mean Daka is the third African player to claim the top scorer award in Austria after Senegal’s Souleyman Sané who achieved it for Tirol Innsbruck in the 1994/95 season and Nigerian striker Olanrewaju Kayode for Austria Vienna in the 2016/17 campaign.

“I am really proud of this and would like to thank all the presidents, club managers and coaches for the award.

“My biggest thank you goes to my teammates and coaching staff who I would like to dedicate this honour to.”

Daka has been on the books of Salzburg since 2017 after initially moving to Austria on loan from Kafue Celtic to Salzburg’s second-tier feeder team Liefering.

His rise to the top began in Zambia when he joined an African football programme called Airtel Rising Stars when he was a teenager which propelled him to play in the domestic top-flight soon after.

It was at the U17 Africa Cup of Nations six years ago that former Mali and Sevilla striker Freddie Kanoute spotted him playing for Zambia.

Two years later, he impressed on home soil and was named the Most Valuable Player as Zambia won the 2017 U20 Afcon to earn himself the Confederation of African Football’s Young Player of the Year in 2017.

It has been a great journey for him so far in Austria. He has netted over 50 league goals since making his debut in the 2017/18 campaign. It remains to be seen if Daka will be at the Red Bull Arena next season with a number of prominent clubs across Europe showing interest in his services.

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By Prince Sobayeni

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