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VICTOR MOSES LOSES OUT AS FINAL SHORTLIST OF AFRICAN FOOTBALLER OF THE YEAR IS UNVEILED

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BY KUNLE SOLAJA.

 

Nigeria and Chelsea star player, Victor Moses has lost out in the race for the 2017 Africa Footballer of the Year. Confederation of African Football on Monday revealed the identities of the top three for all the categories of the Aiteo CAF Awards 2017 in Accra, Ghana.

Sports Village Square recalls that Nigeria’s Victor Moses who made the initial cut of five when the list was pruned from 30 to 11. At that stage, the other Nigerian shortlisted, central defender, William Troost-Ekong had dropped out.

In the final list are Egypt’s  magic man, Mohamed Salah who also features for Premiership side, Liverpool,  Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang of Gabon and German side, Dortmund as well as  Sadio Mane of Senegal and Liverpool.

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Egypt’s Mohammed Salah who has played crucial roles for both club and country looks highly favoured to win the award. Earlier, he has been crowned the BBC African Footballer of the Year. The Aiteo/CAF edition will be an icing on the cake for the prolific striker.

The shortlists for the topmost award, African Player of the Year, were unveiled by Ex-Ghana defender, Sammy Kuffour who lost out to Senegal’s El Hadji Diouf of Senegal at the 2002 Award Ceremony in Johannesburg, South Africa.

The unveiled list however did not show the African Footballer of Year based in Africa for which Nigeria’s Junior Ajayi of Al Ahly of Egypt was listed.

But in the women’s category, Nigeria’s Asisat Oshoala is still in the final race along with South Africa’s Chrestina Kgatlana and Cameroon’s Gabrielle Aboudi Onguene.

The Coach of the Year Award will be a tough contest between the duo of Egypt’s Hector Cuper and Nigeria’s Gernot Rohr. Both qualified their respective teams for the World Cup but with the Nigerian coach finishing unbeaten on the field of play.

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But Egypt’s Hector Cuper can lay claim to additional advantage of leading his team to the final match of the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations. The third contestant is Wydad Athletic Club of Morocco’s L’Hussein Amoutta whose club won the CAF Champions League.

The National Team of the Year is being contested by Cameroon, the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations winners, but complete disappointment in the race to the World Cup; Egypt, the runners-up in the Africa Cup of Nations, but qualifiers for the World Cup for the first time in 27 years and Nigeria, the clinical finisher of the World Cup qualifiers and perhaps the most rejuvenated of the three contestants.

The unveiling ceremony of the final shortlist was attended by CAF President Ahmad, CAF First Vice President Kwesi Nyantakyi, CAF Executive Committee member, Amaju Pinnick, with Ghana’s Minister of Youth and Sports, Isaac Asiamah, the Guest-of-Honour.

Also present were sponsors, Aiteo, represented by Senior Vice President, Commercial and Gas, Victor Okoronkwo, who expressed his outfit’s pride in partnership of the event that celebrates the various stakeholders of African football. The Awards Gala will take place on Thursday, 4 January 2018 in Accra, Ghana.

 

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Below are the top three (Nominees are listed in alphabetical order);

 

African Player of the Year

  • Mohamed Salah (Egypt & Liverpool)
  • Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (Gabon & Dortmund)
  • Sadio Mane (Senegal & Liverpool)

 

Women’s Player of the Year

  • Asisat Oshoala (Nigeria & Dalian Quanjian)
  • Chrestina Kgatlana (South Africa & UWC Ladies)
  • Gabrielle Aboudi Onguene(Cameroon & CSKA Moscow)

 

Youth Player of the Year

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  • Krepin Diatta (Senegal & Sarpsborg)
  • Patson Daka (Zambia & Liefering)
  • Salam Giddou (Mali & Guidars)

 

Coach of the Year

  • Gernot Rohr (Nigeria)
  • Hector Cuper (Egypt)
  • L’Hussein Amoutta (Wydad Athletic Club)

 

Club of the Year

  • Al Ahly
  • TP Mazembe
  • Wydad Athletic Club

 

National Team of the Year

  • Cameroon
  • Egypt
  • Nigeria

 

Women’s National Team of the Year

  • Ghana U-20
  • Nigeria U-20
  • South Africa

 

 

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Kunle Solaja is the author of landmark books on sports and journalism as well as being a multiple award-winning journalist and editor of long standing. He is easily Nigeria’s foremost soccer diarist and Africa's most capped FIFA World Cup journalist, having attended all FIFA World Cup finals from Italia ’90 to Qatar 2022. He was honoured at the Qatar 2022 World Cup by FIFA and AIPS.

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International Football

New twist in Cameroon football coach crisis

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BY KUNLE SOLAJA

The coaching crisis in Cameroon’s Indomitable Lions has taken a new dimension as the football federation, FECAFOOT, led by former international, Samuel Eto’o goes in direct confrontation with the coaching crew appointed by the sports ministry which also picks the bills.

  According to a Cameroon official who will not like to be named as he was not authorised to speak on the matter, the claims and counter claims of both the sports ministry and the FECAFOOT led by Eto’o had been heard and decided by the conciliation and arbitration chamber of the Cameroonian national Olympic committee, which is a court in charge of sports cases in Cameroon.

  “What is in contention is not the position of the Belgian coach, Marcc Brys, but that of the Cameroonian assistants attached to him.”

  The source explained to Sports Village Square that although the employment of Brys by the sports ministry was initially contested by Eto’o, the former player has come to accept the situation.

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  “In Cameroon, there is always a techenical crew of nine to 11. The foreign coach is allowed to bring in two foreign assistants, while the others are always Cameroonians.

  In this case, the sports ministry approved the list of two foreign assistants by Brys while also announcing another set of local assistants that included former international, François Omam-Biyik, one of the stars of Italia ‘90  and the scorer of the goal that gave Cameroon a 1-0 win over a Diego Maradona-inspired  Argentina.

  “That is where the problem is. FECAFOOT also submitted a list of technical crew that included Brys and his two foreign assistants but dropped the names of the local assistants with new ones.”

  In essence, there are two lists with both having three names as same, but differ on the rest.

 According to the source, the list submitted by the sports ministry was upheld by the tribunal which threw aside that of FECAFOOT.

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  In another twist, FIFA has already removed the name of Marc Brys from the profile of Cameroon on its website. Only the name of national women’s coach, Jean-Baptiste Bisseck is listed.

The removal of Brys’ name is happening a second time as it was first removed at the end of last month before being reinstated.

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International Football

Cameroon’s appointment of Brys as manager suspended by sports tribunal

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Marc Brys

Cameroon’s appointment of Belgian Marc Brys as head coach was suspended by the country’s top sports tribunal on Tuesday following the petition of an amateur football club.

The country’s sports ministry stirred controversy last month when it named 61-year-old Brys as manager of the Indomitable Lions without consulting the football federation (FECAFOOT).

The move sparked a dispute between the sports ministry and FECAFOOT, which said the government had made a unilateral decision.

In response, it asked its president Samuel Eto’o to propose a national coach and other management staff for the national side within 72 hours, deepening its standoff with the sports ministry.

Eto’o kept Brys as head coach but named different assistants, technical, medical and administrative staff.

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An amateur club, meanwhile, took the matter to the Arbitration and Conciliation Chamber of the Cameroon National Olympic and Sports Committee.

In a provisional ruling on Tuesday, the court suspended the FECAFOOT appointments while it fully examined the matter. Concerned parties have 24 hours to appeal.

FECAFOOT in response said it “reserves the right to refer these decisions to FIFA, as they hinder the preparation process for the forthcoming sport events.

“The Emergency Committee of FECAFOOT will meet immediately to take appropriate measures,” it said in a statement.

Soccer’s world governing body FIFA has strict rules against government interference in national federations and has frequently banned countries when governments get involved in federation affairs.

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The president of the Cameroon Association of Amateur Football Clubs, Balla Ongolo Henri, had previously said Eto’o’s appointments would damage Cameroon’s image and disrupt preparations for the 2026 World Cup qualifiers next June.

Brys, 61, penned a contract on May 8 as head coach of the Indomitable Lions following the dismissal of Rigobert Song in February. FECAFOOT did not attend the signing ceremony.

The sports ministry says it has acted in accordance with national and international regulations.

Reuters

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International Football

Amokachi, Adebayor and Amanda Dlamini confirmed for CAF African Schools Championship Finals

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African football legends, Emmanuel Adebayor, Daniel Amokachi and Amanda Dlamini are some of the top names that have been confirmed for the Continental Finals of the CAF African Schools Football Championship 2024 scheduled in Zanzibar between 21 – 24 May 2024.

The CAF African Schools Football Championship is the school’s competition that includes over 44 African countries with over 800 000 participants of Boys and Girls under the age of 15.

This is the second edition of the competition that is not only focused on Football but also on a number of programmes including Young Referee’s Programme, Young Reporter Programme and Safeguarding. 

Adebayor, CAF Player of the Year in 2008, represented Togo at the 2006 FIFA World Cup in Germany for their only appearance at the tournament. Ex-striker for Arsenal, Manchester City, Real Madrid, and others, the Togolese star has had a successful career, earning over 85 caps with Les Eperviers.

Nigerian football star Amokachi played 42 international matches for the Super Eagles. He participated in the 1994 and 1998 FIFA World Cups and was part of the team that won the TotalEnergies CAF Africa Cup of Nations in 1994 and the Olympic Games in 1996.

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Former Banyana Banyana (South Africa) captain Dlamini played in two TotalEnergies CAF Women’s Africa Cup of Nations competitions where they finished third and second in 2010 and 2012, respectively. She is one of the few footballers, both in the men’s and women’s national teams to reach 100 caps.

Dlamini recently made history when she became the first female to be part of the world commentary feed at the TotalEnergies CAF Africa Cup of Nations Cote d’Ivoire 2023.

Also on the list are local stars Abdi Kassim Sadalla, former Tanzanian National Team Captain, and Hilda Masanche, Head coach of the Tanzania U17 Women’s National Team.

The Legends will feature in various activities to promote and support football development among African youth.

The finals will bring together talented young players from across the continent, providing them a platform to showcase their skills and passion for the game.

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-CAF

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