Morocco’s Hakimi Beats Osimhen, Chukwueze To Win African Youth Player Of The Year

Moroccon defender Achraf Hakimi (L) is presented with the Youth Player of the Year award during the 2019 CAF Awards in the Egyptian resort town of Hurghada on January 7, 2020. Khaled DESOUKI / AFP

 

 

Morocco and Borussia Dortmund defender, Achraf Hakimi, has been crowned as the African Youth Player Of The Year.

The 21-year-old beat Nigerian duo of Victor Osimhen (Lille) and Samuel Chukwueze (Villarreal) to emerge the winner on Tuesday at the 2019 CAF Awards ceremony in Egypt.

Meanwhile, Senegalese striker and Liverpool star Sadio Mane won his first Africa’s 2019 Player of the Year honour.

The 27-year old beat his Liverpool teammate Mohamed Salah of Egypt who won the award the last two years, as well as Algeria’s Riyad Mahrez (Manchester City).

Celebrating his success at the event, he said, “I am really happy and at the same time I am really proud to win this award. It’s a big day for me.”

Mane scored 34 goals and produced 12 assists in 61 appearances in 2019, according to CAF statistics.

 

The Pride Of Nigeria

It was a win for Nigeria as Super Falcons’ Captain Asisat Oshoala was named as the 2019 African Women’s Player of the Year.

Oshoala, who plays for Spanish side Barcelona, beat Ajara Nchout of Cameroon and South Africa’s Thembi Kgatlana, who was crowned in Senegal last year to claim the title.

It is the fourth time the 25-year-old is being crowned the best African female footballer.

She won the award in 2014, 2016 and 2017, and was also among the final three in 2018 but lost to her South African rival Kgatlana.

Shortly after she was announced as the winner, Oshoala took to Twitter to thank her family and friends, as well as her fans and colleagues locally and internationally for their support.

 

Other male awards were claimed by Algerian coach Djamel Belmadi, Algerian Youcef Belaili for African Interclubs Player of the Year and Algeria’s national team.

The female awardees were South African coach Desiree Ellis, and Cameroon’s women national team.

The Egyptian Football Association won the Federation of the Year award.

Oshoala, Chukwueze, Osimhen Vie For Honours At CAF Awards

Asisat Oshoala                                      Victor Osimhen                                         Samuel Chukwueze

 

Nigerian football players Asisat Oshoala, Victor Osimhen, and Samuel Chukwueze are in the shortlist for honours at the 2019 CAF Awards ceremony scheduled for the Albatros Citadel Sahl Hasheesh, Hurghada, Egypt on Tuesday.

Winner of the women’s award in 2014, 2016 and 2017, and also among the final three in 2018, Super Falcons’ captain Asisat Oshoala is highly favoured for a fourth African Woman Player of the Year crown, which will equal the feat of fellow Nigerian, Perpetual Nkwocha.

The other contenders are Ajara Nchout from Cameroon and South Africa’s Thembi Kgatlana, who was crowned in Dakar, Senegal 12 months ago.

Super Eagles’ youngsters Samuel Chukwueze and Victor Osimhen are in the running for the Young Player of the Year award, with Morocco’s Achraf Hakimi.

Nigeria’s Super Falcons is primed for the award of the Women’s National Team of the Year, having successfully retained their continental crown in Ghana in December 2018 and reached the knockout stage of the FIFA Women’s World Cup in France last year summer.

Cameroon’s Indomitable Lionesses and Banyana Banyana of South Africa are the other contenders

Former Super Falcons’ coach, Thomas Dennerby is also listed for the Women’s Coach of the Year for his work with the Super Falcons.

He will battle South Africa’s Desire Ellis and Cameroon’s Alain Djeumfa.

The final phase of voting for the men’s and women’s African Player of the Year, as well as the male and female Coach of the Year, will be selected by Head Coaches/Technical Directors and Captains of senior national teams from CAF Member Associations.

Meanwhile, the Inter-Clubs Player of the Year will be decided by the Head Coaches and Captains of the group phase of the current season of CAF Inter-Clubs competitions.

See the top three contenders for all the categories below:

African Player of the Year

Mohamed Salah (Egypt & Liverpool)

Riyad Mahrez (Algeria & Manchester City)

Sadio Mane (Senegal & Liverpool)

African Women’s Player of the Year

Ajara Nchout (Cameroon & Valerenga)

Asisat Oshoala (Nigeria & Barcelona)

Thembi Kgatlana (South Africa & Beijing Phoenix FC)

African Interclubs Player of the Year

Anice Badri (Tunisia & Esperance)

Tarek Hamed (Egypt & Zamalek)

Youcef Belaïli (Algeria & Esperance / Ahli Jeddah)

African Youth Player of the Year

Achraf Hakimi (Morocco & Borussia Dortmund)

Samuel Chukwueze (Nigeria & Villarreal)

Victor Osimhen (Nigeria & Lille)

African Men’s Coach of the Year

Aliou Cisse (Senegal – Senegal)

Djamel Belmadi (Algeria – Algeria)

Moïne Chaâbani (Tunisia – Esperance)

African Women’s Coach of the Year

Alain Djeumfa (Cameroon)

Desiree Ellis (South Africa)

Thomas Dennerby (Nigeria)

African Men’s National Team of the Year

Algeria

Madagascar

Senegal

African Women’s National Team of the Year

Cameroon

Nigeria

South Africa

Oshoala, Osimhen, Chukwueze Make Final List Of 2019 CAF Awards

 

Asisat Oshoala has made the top three lists of contenders for the 2019 Confederation of African Football (CAF) Women’s Player of the Year award.

For the African Youth Player of the Year category, Victor Osimhen and Samuel Chukwueze made the cut, having to slug it out with Achraf Hakimi of Morocco.

The list which was published on CAF’s website was trimmed down by votes from a CAF Technical & Development Committee and a panel of media experts with an emphasis on the nominees’ performance during the year under review, 2019.

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The trio of Mohamed Salah, Sadio Mane and Riyad Mahrez who ply their trade in the English Premier League, made the list for African Player of the Year category.

The ceremony is billed for January 7, 2020, at the Albatros Citadel Sahl Hasheesh, Hurghada, in Egypt.

See the full list below:

African Player of the Year

Mohamed Salah (Egypt & Liverpool)

Riyad Mahrez (Algeria & Manchester City)

Sadio Mane (Senegal & Liverpool)

African Women’s Player of the Year

Ajara Nchout (Cameroon & Valerenga)

Asisat Oshoala (Nigeria & Barcelona)

Thembi Kgatlana (South Africa & Beijing Phoenix FC)

African Interclubs Player of the Year

Anice Badri (Tunisia & Esperance)

Tarek Hamed (Egypt & Zamalek)

Youcef Belaïli (Algeria & Esperance / Ahli Jeddah)

African Youth Player of the Year

Achraf Hakimi (Morocco & Borussia Dortmund)

Samuel Chukwueze (Nigeria & Villarreal)

Victor Osimhen (Nigeria & Lille)

African Men’s Coach of the Year

Aliou Cisse (Senegal – Senegal)

Djamel Belmadi (Algeria – Algeria)

Moïne Chaâbani (Tunisia – Esperance)

African Women’s Coach of the Year

Alain Djeumfa (Cameroon)

Desiree Ellis (South Africa)

Thomas Dennerby (Nigeria)

African Men’s National Team of the Year

Algeria

Madagascar

Senegal

African Women’s National Team of the Year

Cameroon

Nigeria

South Africa

Super Eagles Forward, Samuel Chukwueze Rejoins Villareal

Super Eagles winger, Samuel Chukwueze.

 

Ahead of the 2019-20 La Liga season, the Super Eagles winger, Samuel Chukwueze, has rejoined his Spanish club, Villarreal.

Chukwueze, who scored once as Nigeria finished third in the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations in Egypt, was given an extended break.

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The Yellow Submarine took to Twitter to confirm his pre-season arrival on Monday.

“He’s here! @chukwueze_8 started his special #YellowsPreseason training programme at the Training Ground after taking part in the Africa Cup of Nations with @NGSuperEagles. Great to have you back, Samu!” the club said.

The 20-year-old scored eight goals in 38 appearances across all competitions last season, to help Javier Calleja’s men finish 14th in LaLiga.

Chukweze will be expected to play a part when Villarreal take on La Nucia in a pre-season game on Wednesday.

Channels TV Wins Aiteo-NFF Development Award

 

Channels Television has won the AITEO-Nigeria Football Federation award for the second consecutive year, for promoting football at the grassroots.

The Channels International Kids Cup, a corporate social responsibility programme of the TV station, started in 2009 as a Lagos state competition and has evolved into an international event featuring participants from the Benin Republic and Ghana.

The tournament received the development award at the maiden edition of the NFF awards for constantly improving on the objective of discovering and nurturing young talents under the age of 13 in primary schools.

Meanwhile, Super Eagles’ stand-in captain Ahmed Musa and Super Falcons’ opposite number Onome Ebi took the big gongs at the second edition of the awards that held in Lagos on Monday night.

Among the winners were Super Falcons’ coach Thomas Dennerby, Super Eagles’ ace winger Samuel Chukwueze and Enugu Rangers’ coach Olugbenga Ogunbote.

The project started only last year, but, like the first edition, dignitaries and guests came from all over Africa and other parts of the world.

The highlight of the night, by miles, was the special recognition of the Super Eagles’ Class of 1994 – the squad widely nicknamed ‘Golden Generation’ after qualifying Nigeria for her first ever FIFA World Cup finals, winning the Africa Cup of Nations on away soil for the first time and coming within 100 seconds of a quarter-final place at the World Cup in the United States of America.

Physically present and bathed in applause were goalkeepers Peter Rufai and Alloy Agu, defenders Austin Eguavoen, Uche Okechukwu, Benedict Iroha, Nduka Ugbade and Taribo West, midfielders Mutiu Adepoju, Austin ‘JJ’ Okocha, Sunday Oliseh and Edema Fuludu and forwards Finidi George, Samson Siasia and Daniel Amokachi. Omoyemi Yekini, daughter of the ‘goalsfather’ Rashidi Yekini, stood in for her late father as well as the four others who had passed on: team Captain Stephen Keshi, goalkeeper Wilfred Agbonavbare, defender Uche Okafor and midfielder Thompson Oliha.

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Emmanuel Amuneke, Michael Emenalo, Emeka Ezeugo, Efan Ekoku, Isaac Semitoje and Chidi Nwanu could not make it down to Nigeria for the ceremony. While a couple of the players present on Monday night did not make the final cut for the World Cup in America, six members of the group went ahead to join the Dream Team and return to America to conquer – by winning Africa’s men’s football gold at the Centennial Olympics in Atlanta two years later.

Secretary-General of FIFA, Ms Fatma Samoura (the first African/first woman to occupy the position) was honoured with the NFF Order of Merit Award, as Presidents of 18 Member Associations of FIFA, the Abia State Governor (Chief Okezie Ikpeazu), the Acting Governor of Edo State (Comrade Philip Shaibu), two Governors-elect (Babajide Sanwo-Olu of Lagos State and Abdulrazak Abdulrahman of Kwara State) and captains of industry, political juggernauts, A-class artistes and heavyweight stakeholders of the game watched at the Eko Hotel and Suites, Victoria Island, Lagos.

Members of the NFF Executive Committee and Management, Members of the NFF Congress and chairman of various Clubs were also in attendance.

President of the Nigeria Football Federation and First Vice President of CAF, Amaju Melvin Pinnick, once more eulogized the present administration of President Muhammadu Buhari (GCFR) for providing the conducive environment for football to thrive and for total support for the NFF and the various National Teams, while calling on Nigeria’s other billionaires and well-heeled companies to emulate AITEO Group and boost the development of football in Nigeria.

Business mogul and politician, Chief M. K. O. Abiola was honoured with the NFF Presidential Award, while Governor Akinwunmi Ambode of Lagos received the Lifetime Achievement Award for his hefty support for football projects and programs of the National Teams.

There were several members of the CAF Executive Committee, namely Dr Danny Jordaan of South Africa, Suleiman Waberi of Djibouti, Aisha Johansen of Sierra Leone, Moses Magogo of Uganda and Sita Sangare of Burkina Faso.  All noted the good and great works that Samoura, who spent 21 years working for the United Nations, has been doing as chief accounting officer of FIFA since she assumed office three years ago.

NFF First Vice President and Chairman of the Awards organizing committee, Barrister Seyi Akinwunmi said the Federation decided it was apt to honour the Super Eagles’ Class of 1994, 25 years to their AFCON –winning exploits and FIFA World Cup performance. It would be recalled that Nigeria was named the second most entertaining team of the USA 1994 World Cup.

Responding on behalf of the 1994 Eagles, defender Austin Eguavoen expressed deep appreciation of the squad to the NFF for the honour, while also using the opportunity to plead that NFF should help the players pursue the Federal Government’s promise of a house for each member of the squad, following the AFCON triumph in Tunisia 25 years ago.

2ND AITEO-NFF AWARDS WINNERS

Young Player of the Year (Female): Anam Imo

Young Player of the Year (Male): Samuel Chukwueze

Fair Play Award: Akwa United FC

Fans of the Season: Kano Pillars FC Fans

Coach of the Year (Female): Thomas Dennerby

Coach of the Year (Male): Olugbenga Ogunbote

Goal of the Year: Ahmed Musa

Team of the Season: Super Falcons

NFF Development Award: Channels Television (Channels International Kids’ Cup)

Special Recognition: Super Eagles of 1994                           

Lifetime Achievement Award: Governor Akinwunmi Ambode

NFF Presidential Award: Chief M.K.O Abiola (of blessed memory)

NFF Order of Merit Award: Fatma Samoura

Player of the Year (Female): Onome Ebi

Player of the Year (Male): Ahmed Musa

Flying Eagles Edge Closer To Zambia 2017

flying eaglesNigeria’s U-20 team, the Flying Eagles are optimistic that a place at the Africa U-20 Cup of Nations, Zambia 2017 is within grasp as they confront visiting Young Falcons of Sudan at the Teslim Balogun Stadium, Lagos on Saturday.

The Emmanuel Amuneke-tutored side won the first leg in Khartoum 2-1 two weeks ago and are tipped as favourites to reach the finals coming up in Zambia next year.

Samuel Chukwueze and Victor Osimhen scored as the Flying Eagles came from behind to defeat their hosts in Khartoum, and both players are in top shape for Saturday’s clash.

Osimhen, was a record scorer at the FIFA Under-17 World Cup in 2015, hitting 10 goals in Chile as Nigeria roared to a fifth triumph. Chukwueze’s goals also counted and he scooped the bronze boot as the third highest scorer of the tournament.

The Young Falcons have a mountain to climb against a squad that is not used to tasting defeat.

Amuneke has come to this level with the bulk of the boys who did Nigeria proud in Chile, and have maintained an unbeaten streak ever since.

Eaglets Dominate U-17 World Cup Individual Honours

eagletsNigeria successfully defended their crown at the FIFA U-17 World Cup Chile 2015 and the Eaglets also dominated the individual honours at the tournament.

The Eaglets’ captain, Kelechi Nwakali won the adidas Golden Ball as the tournament’s best player.

Victor Osimhen won the  adidas Silver Ball in addition to the the adidas Golden Boot which he earned courtesy his record-breaking 10 goals and two assists.

Mali’s forward, Aly Malle got the adidas Bronze Ball.

Nwakali told FIFA.com, “I thank God for the opportunity to win this award. It means so much.”

Giving the credit to his team-mates’ hard work and diligence throughout their time in Chile, he said, “Right from the game against the USA, when we arrived in Chile, our aim was to defend the trophy.

“We believed the only way we could do this was hard work. We approached each game with hard work and seriousness. Any team that came to Chile worked for it.”

Other award winners are:

adidas Silver Boot: Johannes Eggestein (Germany/4 goals, 0 assists)

adidas Bronze Boot: Kelechi Nwakali (Nigeria/3 goals, 3 assists)

adidas Golden Glove: Samuel Diarra (Mali)

FIFA Fair Play Award: Ecuador

Under-17 World Cup: Mali Joins Nigeria In Semi-Final

Under-17The Malian Under-17 have joined their fellow Africans, Nigeria in qualifying for the semi-final of the 2015 Under-17 World Cup.

Mali’s miserly defence continued in their 1-0 victory over Croatia, with Les Aigles stretching their impressive run without conceding to almost five hours.

Sekou Koita’s first-half effort was enough to see off the Europeans, despite a booking for captain Abdoul Dante meaning their leader and defensive organiser would miss the historic semi-final.

This is their first FIFA U-17 World Cup semi-final.

Nigeria had earlier on Sunday night punished Brazil’s profligacy and strolled into the last-four with a 3-0 victory.

With eight semi-finals for holders Nigeria, they have now set a FIFA U-17 World Cup record, after surpassing Brazil by beating them in the Chile 2015 quarter-final.

Under-17 World Cup: Golden Eaglets Beat Brazil 3-0

EagletsThe Golden Eaglets of Nigeria have defeated the Brazilian Under-17 3-0 in their quarter final match on Sunday.

The Brazilians started as the brighter side but once the Eaglets settled, the momentum switched in their favour.

Victor Osimeh put the Eaglets ahead in the 29th minute and it took less than a minute for Kingsley Dogo Michael to double the lead.

With two goals within a minute, the Eaglets were able to play some good football and in the process damaging their opponents’ confidence.

Udochukwu Anumudu made it 3-0 in the 34th minute to complete a dream first half that saw them scoring three goals in the space of five minutes.

The Brazilians fought hard in the second half for a possible comeback but all efforts were futile as the Nigerian boys remained well organised.

The four-time world champions will play the winners of Monday’s quarterfinal between Mexico and Ecuador for a place in the championship final in Chile.

The semi-final will be at Concepcion on Thursday.

Amuneke Believes Eaglets Are Candidates For Title

Amuneke Believes Eaglets Are Candidates For TitleGolden Eaglets coach, Emmanuel Amuneke, has said that his team are title contenders at the ongoing FIFA u-17 World Cup.

This came as the Eaglets cruised to the quarter finals of the competition following the victory against Australia in Vina Del Mar on Thursday morning in the round of 16.

A hat-trick from Victor Osimhen and other goals from the trio of Kelechi Nwakali, Edidiong Essien and Samuel Chukwueze ensured that Nigeria maintained her long time dominance over the Aussies who were initially seen as a tricky side.

However, Coach Amuneke said that the philosophy of his team was to play collectively, though he admitted that Victor Osimhen, who scored a hat-trick had a great game.

The Eaglets, who had scored 14 goals, have become the first team to score six goals in a FIFA U-17 World Cup knock out phase as they attempt to win the trophy for the fifth time.

The Nigerian team are due to face the Brazilian side in the quarter finals on Sunday, November 1.

Nwakali, Osimhen Lead Golden Eaglets Squad

golden_eagletsKelechi Nwakali, Victor Osimhen, as well as Ebere Osinachi, have been picked to lead Nigeria’s Under-17 squad to the FIFA World Cup in Chile in October.

The trio were in the team that secured the country’s World Cup ticket at the African Under-17 Nations Cup in Niger in February.

Also picked were Akpan Udoh, Amos Benjamin, Halilu Lukman, Lazarus John, Kingsley Michael, Orji Okonkwo and Samuel Chukwueze.

New faces in the team are David Enogela, Ibe Tobechukwu and Ejike Ikwu.

The Defending Champions would begin their campaign at the tournament against the United States of America on October 17 at the Julion Martinez national stadium in Santiago.