CAF AWARDS: Ekong Out, Moses Still In
By Christian Okpara
SUPER Eagles defender, William Troost-Ekong, who was among the players earlier shortlisted by the Confederation of African Football (CAF) for the African Footballer of the Year Awards, is missing in the new list released by the football body yesterday. But his compatriots, Victor Moses and Junior Ajayi retained their positions in their respective groups in the new list.
The Awards gala will hold on January 4, 2018 in Accra, Ghana.
Moses is among 11 nominees for the African Player of the Year Award, while Ajayi is still among the 10 players listed in the Player of the Year (Based in Africa) group.
CAF said in a statement yesterday that the lists were arrived at through votes from members of the CAF Technical and Development Committee, CAF Media Experts Panel and Independent Media and TV Consultants, from the initial 30-man list.
The second and final phase will involve head coaches or technical directors of the national associations taking part in the voting exercise and 10 members from the Independent Media and TV Consultants group, it said.
The statement revealed that for the first time, ìcaptains of the senior menís national teams of the affiliated national associations will also take part in decision making process of the African Player of the Year and Player of the Year (Based in Africa).
The nominees for the African Player of the Year are Bertrand Traore of Burkina Faso and Olympique Lyon, Denis Onyango (Uganda and Mamelodi Sundowns), Karim El Ahmadi (Morocco & Feyenoord), Keita Balde (Senegal and Monaco), Mohamed Salah (Egypt and Liverpool), Naby Keita (Guinea and RB Leipzig), Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (Gabon and B. Dortmund), Sadio Mane (Senegal and Liverpool), Victor Moses (Nigeria and Chelsea), Vincent Aboubakar of Cameroon and Porto and Yacine Brahimi (Algeria and Porto).
For the Player of the Year Based in Africa, the nominees are Achraf Bencharki of Morocco and Wydad Athletic Club, Ahmed Fathi of Egypt and Al Ahly, Ali Maaloul (Tunisia and Al Ahly), Aristide Bance (Burkina Faso and El Masry) and Ben Malango (DR Congo and TP Mazembe).