Who Will be BBC African Footballer of the Year 2017?
With the 5-man shortlist for this year’s AFOTY award revealed, it’s time to cast your vote.
The 5 players on this year’s BBC African Player of the Year shortlist. Image: bbc.co.uk
This year’s shortlist is a toughie for football fans. All five nominees have been playing sublime football over the past 12 months for their club and country.
Let’s take a look at the five players vying for your vote:
PIERRE-EMERICK AUBEMAYANG: GABON & BORUSSIA DORTMUND
The Dortmund striker finds himself on the shortlist for the fifth consecutive year after an outstanding 2017. After scoring 35 goals for Dortmund, leading them to victory in the German Cup, the 28-year-old also became the first African to top the Bundesliga scoring charts outright.
As well as topping the scoring charts, Aubameyang also became the fourth player in Bundesliga history to bang in over 30 goals- a feat that cemented his place as the only African player on FIFA’s Player of the Year shortlist.
NABY KEITA: RB LEIPZIG & GUINEA
The second Bundesliga player to make the shortlist is RB Leipzig midfielder Naby Keita. Keita makes the list for the first time after attracting attention for his fine form. His brilliant debut season shocked the football world as the German new boys finished second in the Bundesliga.
Jurgen Klopp certainly admires the midfielder; signing the 22-year-old for a record African transfer fee after he scored eight goals and assisted a further seven. A great return for a defensive midfielder.
SADIO MANE: SENEGAL & LIVERPOOL
Liverpool’s star man gets his third nomination after being voted on the PFA Team of the Year as well as being crowned Liverpool’s Player of the Year. The 25-year-old was also one of two African players to make the Ballon d’Or shortlist.
Senegal reached their first World Cup since 2002 after Mane’s clinical touch and blistering pace helped them seal victory over South Africa with assists for both goals in a 2-1 victory.
He took to life on Merseyside seamlessly, finishing as joint top goal scorer as the Reds qualified for the Champions League last season.
VICTOR MOSES: NIGERIA & CHELSEA
After taking so long to find his place in the Premier League, Moses finally established himself at Stamford Bridge under Antonio Conte. Solidifying himself into the starting 11 and finishing the year as a Premier League champion, and with an FA Cup runners-up medal round his neck, proves that dedication can pay dividends in the end.
As well as helping Nigeria qualify for Russia, it has been quite a year for the wing-back.
MOHAMED SALAH: EGYPT & LIVERPOOL
The Egyptian winger has proven his quality in Italy as well as in the Premier League, scoring 15 goals and assisting another 11 for Roma. The Italian team finished runners-up in Serie A before Salah made the switch to Liverpool.
The second Liverpool player on the list has bagged himself a whopping 12 goals in his first 17 games for the Reds. Not a bad return, eh?
After scoring a dramatic stoppage-time penalty to fire Egypt to the World Cup, Mo Salah has been a hero amongst fans in his home country too, and he’s perhaps our pick to take home the award come December 11th.
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