BY KUNLE SOLAJA.
Nigeria’s wingback, Victor Moses lost out in the race for the African Footballer of the Year as well as being named in the Fans Finest XI. He was one of the front runners until the last ‘legs’ of both races.
According to data collected by www.sportsvillagesquare.com from the Confederation of African Football, CAF, Moses possibly lost out from being in the final shortlist as two Nigerians in the voting panel did not vote in the Phase 1 of the poll.
Moses ended up in that phase with 60 points to a joint third with Gabon’s Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.
Voting by them, especially if Moses was indicated as their prime candidate, could have given the Nigerian right wingback an additional 10 votes. But all the same, Moses still made the top 11 as at that stage.
Among the 18-man CAF Technical & Development Committee that voted, Zambia’s Kalusha Bwalya voted Victor Moses as his second preferred candidate behind Egypt’s Mohammed Salah. Kalusha’s vote fetched Moses, four points.
Korici Toufique of Algeria is the only one who voted Moses as number one, thus giving him a maximum five points.
Overall, the Technical & Development Committee ranked Moses as number four with 22 points behind Mohammed Salah (63), Sadio Mane (34) and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (28).
The other Nigerian in the initial 30-man list, William Troost-Ekong did not get any vote from the members of the CAF Technical & Development Committee. He was not alone in that poor outing. Christian Bassogog of Cameroon, Fabrice Ondoa, Fackson Kapumbu, Junior Kabananga, Mbwana Samata, Michael Olunga, Moussa Marega, Percy Tau and Thomas Partey are the others with zero votes.
Eventually, the Nigerian central defender, Troost-Ekong got three votes from the second panel of voters – the CAF Panel of Media Experts. Nigeria’s Ayotunde Adelakun gave him his least vote of one point while Marceline-Maze Muakumanya of DR Congo gave him two points.
The CAF Panel of Media Experts cumulatively gave Moses 23 votes to rank him third behind Sadio Mane (52 votes) and Mohamed Salah (51 votes).
The third group of voters are the Independent Media and TV Consultants where all the 10 but one did not vote. The missing vote, if given to Moses could have seen him come second here. But he finished fourth with 15 votes behind Mohammed Salah (44), Sadio Mane (25) and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (16).
The last set of voters was the national associations where the coaches and captains formed the Electoral College.
Victor Moses’ votes were from diverse national associations except the following that had neither their captain nor coach voting for him: Rwanda, Central African Republic, Morocco, Mozambique, Guinea, Liberia, Niger Republic, Djibouti, Sudan, DR Congo, and Burkina Faso.
Significantly, Zambia, eliminated by Nigeria from the World Cup, offered Moses six of maximum 10 points.
The Coach of Cameroon voted Moses second, offering him four of possible five points while the Cameroon skipper gave him the maximum five points. Thus, Moses got nine of maximum 10 points from Nigeria’s eastern neighbours, Cameroon.
When all the points were summed up, Moses had 155 points as against 452 by Mohammed Salah, 391 by Sadio Mane, and 241 by Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang. That way, Moses placed fourth and could not make the final three shortlist.