Arsenal flop, City star and Southampton newbie on African Player of the Year shortlist

Manchester City, Chelsea and Southampton players feature ... while former Arsenal and Sunderland stars are also on the list.

For many the BBC’s version of the African Footballer of the Year has become the official recognition of the best player from the continent in a calendar year - but the African federation CAF have their own awards as well.

The BBC nominees this year features favourite Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Victor Moses, John Obi Mikel, Jonathan Pitroipa and Yaya Toure - and all but one of those feature on the official shortlist.

Unfortunately his federation has not recognised the exploits of Victor Moses this season - who has been left off the 25 man shortlist.

However there are some very familiar names.

Yaya Toure features, as does John Obi Mikel. The Manchester City midfielder can certainly still argue to be the best African footballer on the planet; while Mikel was a steadying influence in Nigeria’s African Cup of Nations win.

Then there is Kenyan midfield destroyer Victor Wanyama. He moved to Southampton this summer, but it is probably his performances for Celtic in the Champions League that have earned him a place on the shortlist.

And in terms of Premier League players, that is it.

Of course there are some former stars of these shores. Former Sunderland striker Asamoah Gyan features, after scoring goals for fun with Al-Ain. Chelsea legend Didier Drogba is on the list once again, after a mini rejuvenation at Galatasaray.

And then there is Gervinho.

The Ivorian was flogged at a loss by Arsenal this summer, after failing to make an impact at The Emirates.

But he has been sensational since joining AS Roma in the summer - and was recently dubbed ‘ the African Messi’.

Here is the list in full…

Ahmed Musa (Nigeria / CSKA Moscow)

Asamoah Gyan (Ghana / Al Ain)

Dame N’Doye (Senegal/ Lokomotiv Moscow)

Didier Drogba (Ivory Coast / Galatasaray)

Emmanuel Emenike (Nigeria / Fenerbahçe)

Islam Slimani (Algeria / Sporting Lisbon)

John Obi Mikel (Nigeria / Chelsea)

Jonathan Pitroipa (Burkina Faso / Rennes)

Kevin Constant (Guinea / Milan)

Kwadwo Asamoah (Ghana / Juventus)

Luís Carlos Almada Soares (Cape Verde / Omonia Nicosia)

Mehdi Benattia (Morocco / Roma)

Mohamed About Erika (Egypt / Al Ahly)

Mohamed Salah (Egypt / FC Basel)

Nicolas Nkoulou (Cameroon / Maseille)

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (Gabon / Dortmund)

Ryan Mendes (Cape Verde / Lille)

Saladin Said (Ethiopia / Wadi Degla)

Seydou Keita (Mali / Dalian Aerbin)

Sofiane Feghouli (Algeria / Valencia)

Sunday Mba (Nigeria / Warri Wolves)

Victor Wanyama (Kenya / Southampton)

Vincent Enyeama (Nigeria / Lille)

Gervinho (Ivory Coast / Roma)

Yaya Toure (Ivory Coast / Manchester City)

The winner is announced in Nigeria on January 9th.

image: © ronnie macdonald

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