Iwobi Out as Nigerians Miss Final Shortlist for the Fourth Time in a Row



*Oshoala, Ordega listed in women’s category

Duro Ikhazuagbe with agency report

Nigeria has missed out again in the final shortlist of three players in contention for the African Player of the Year award to be announced by CAF on January 8 in Dakar, Senegal.

This is the fourth edition in a row no Nigerian player is considered worthy enough to make it to the final three despite on-fire Arsenal star, Alex Iwobi, who was in the second shortlist of 10 was dropped when Confederation of African Football (CAF) announced the final shortlist on New Year Day.

Both Ahmed Musa and Odion Ighalo who were in the first shortlist of 33 along with Iwobi dropped out when the list was reduced to 10 before Iwobi and six others were snubbed yesterday.

Expectedly, Egypt and Liverpool goal poacher, Mohamed Salah topped the list of final three men in contention for the coveted individual top prize in African football.

Salah who was voted BBC African Player of the Year for the second time last December is highly favoured to retain the CAF honour he also won last year even as Iwobi’s Gabonese teammate at Arsenal, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, is also in the fray to deny the Egyptian the back-to-back feat.

The third player in contention is Salah’s Senegalese teammate at Anfield, Sadio Mane.

The award being sponsored by Nigeria’s oil and gas giants, Aiteo is going to hold in the slave-trade island of Gorée, two kilometres off the Atlantic Ocean coast of Dakar

Except the unexpected happens Nigeria’s Asisat Oshoala is on the verge of winning a fourth CAF award having won the last three editions back-to-back. Before then, the Dilian Quanjian player in China’s women’s Super League had won it once.

Oshoala has her fellow Super Falcons’ teammate, Francisca Ordega, to contend with. Banyana Banyana of South Africa’s Thembi Kgatlana is the third nominee in that category.

While Oshoala and Falcons won the 2018 AWCON for the ninth time in Ghana, Kgatlana was voted the Most Valuable Player and top-scorer at the competition.

Men’s African Player of the Year:

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (Gabon)
Sadio Mane (Senegal)
Mohamed Salah (Egypt)
Women’s African Player of the Year:

§ Thembi Kgatlana (South Africa)

§ Francisca Ordega (Nigeria)

§ Asisat Oshoala (Nigeria)