Africa Soccer CAF Footballer Of the Year : Salah, Mane…Ranking the Favourites of the Award

CAF Footballer Of the Year

Africa Top Sports made its ranking of the 2022 CAF Footballer Of The Year Award favourites with Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane being on top as CAF announcing the 10-man shortlist on Monday.

Confederation of African Football (CAF) announced on Monday the 10 players who will compete for the CAF Football Of The Year Award as 20 of them are dropped.

Despite having an outstanding season with Sevilla and winning the Zamora Trophy ahead of Real Madrid’s Thibaut Courtois and Atletico’s jan Oblak in La Liga, Yassine Bounou is not part of this final list.

Mane, Salah, Mahrez, Vincent Aboubakar, Sebastien Haller, Achraf Hakimi, Edouard Mendy, Koulibaly, Toko Ekambi and Naby Keita are the ones who are selected for the award.

Read more : Check out WAFCON 2021 Quarter-finals fixtures

Pending the ceremony which will take place on July 21 in Morocco, host country of the Women’s Africa Cup of Nations (WAFCON 2022), take a look at Africa Top Sports’ Top 10 Favourites.

Africa Top SportsTop 10 Favourites for 2022 CAF Footballer of The year Award

10- Naby Keita (Guinea, Liverpool)

The 27-year old played a huge role for Liverpool last season as they won the FA Cup, Carabao Cup before bowing to Manchester City in the final matchday of the Premier League and Real Madrid in the Champions league final (0-1).

Keita who scored 4 goals and provided 3 assists in 40 appearances with the Reds also led Guinea until the round of 16 of the Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON 2021) in Cameroon before losing to Gambia (0-1).

9- Achraf Hakimi (Morocco, PSG)

The 23-year old right-wing back did not have the best season of his life with Paris Saint-Germain last term following his move from Inter Milan. Hakim only provided 6 assists and netted 4 goals in 41 appearances in PSG’s Ligue 1 winning season.

The former Real Madrid star could have been higher in this rank should the Atlas Lions who lose to Mohamed Salah’s Egypt in the AFCON 2021 quarter-finals went farer.

8- Karl Toko Ekambi (Cameroon, Lyon)

The Cameroonian striker who scored 18 goals and provided 7 assists with in 39 appearances with Lyon last season owes his place in this rank mainly for his stellar performances during the AFCON in his home country.

Toko Ekambi scored 5 goals and ended the competition being the second top scorer behind countryman Vincent Aboubakar as Indomitable Lions won bronze medal.

7- Kalidou Koulibaly (Senegal, Naples)

Koulibaly was one of the top performers for Naples last season helping the team ending at the third place and qualify for the this season’s UEFA Champions league.

The 31-year old also played a great role for Senegal’s Teranga Lions who won the AFCON for the first time in their history in February this year.

6- Edouard Mendy (Senegal, Chelsea)

The 30-year old’s season with Chelsea was less impressive than what he did during the 2020-21 one. However, his stats are still interesting as he saved 23 clean sheets in 40 appearances with the Blues.

Mendy turned monster in the sticks for Senegal and inspired them to their first ever triumph in AFCON by saving a penalty in the shootouts session against Egypt to claim the trophy and the Best Goalkeeper of the tournament award.

5- Vincent Aboubakar (Cameroon, Al-Nassr Riad)

Aboubakar always levelled up to expectations with Cameroon during the AFCON in Samuel Eto’o country. The former Porto forward ended the competition as the Top scorer with 8 goals ahead of Salah, Mane and co.

The 30-year old also netted 8 goals and provided 4 assists in 22 games in club.

Read more : Sebastien Haller joins Dortmund from Ajax Amsterdam

4- Sebastien Haller (Côte d’Ivoire, Ajax Amsterdam)

Haller had a mind-blowing 2021/22 season with Ajax Amsterdam, scoring 29 goals and 9 assists in 42 appearances with 11 of them comin in 8 Champions league games where he ended as third top scorer behind Robert Lewandowski (16) and Karim Benzema (16).

However, the fact that Haller and Ivory Coast were eliminated in the AFCON 2021 round of 16 against Egypt does not arrange him.

3- Riyad Mahrez (Algeria, Man City)

The Manchester City star has always been among the best African players abroad every season this last years. Mahrez scored 24 goals, provided 9 assists in 47 matches with the Sky Blues last season.

He however bowed out of the Africa Cup of Nations 2021 too quickly as Algeria failed to do better than the group stages.

2- Mohamed Salah (Egypt, Liverpool)

Salah could have been undoubtedly the 2022 CAF Footballer Of The Year should he have won the AFCON 2021, the UEFA Champions league final and the 2022 World Cup play-off against Senegal.

However, he lost all of them and despite claiming the Premier League Golden Boot (23) and the most assist award (14) with many other individual accolades adding to the FA Cup and Carabao Cup triumphs, Mo Salah remains behind Sadio Mane for us.

1- Sadio Mane (Senegal, Liverpool)

2022 is Sadio Mane’s year. The 30-year old was the key factor for Senegal when they won they won the AFCON 2021 in Cameroon and claimed the MVP Award.

He also scored the penalty who sent Teranga Lions to the World Cup in Qatar at the expense of Mohamed Salah’s Egypt few months after doing it in Cameroon.

Despite scoring 23 goals and 5 assists in 51 appearances in club, beating Salah twice in Africa is a huge asset for Sadio Mane and we think he should be this year’s CAF Footballer of The Year.

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