Confederation of African Football (CAF) on Monday released the top 10 nominees in contention for the African Player of the Year award.
The continent’s soccer ruling body however excluded Nigerian duo, Ahmed Musa and Vincent Enyeama, from the list – both were initially part of the 37-man nominee released in October.
Super Eagles captain, Musa, has been in blistering form for his club, CSKA Moscow, scoring seven times in 17 appearances for the Army club – while his predecessor, Enyeama, remains the best goalkeeper on the continent with French side, Lille.
Manchester City midfielder, Yaya Toure, is in line to win the award for a record fourth consecutive time.
The Ivorian is joined by countryman, Serge Aurier, who has made the right back position at French champions, Paris Saint Germain, his own.
Africa’s hottest striker in Europe, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang of Borussia Dortmund, makes the cut, while Algerian pair, Sofiane Feghouli and Yacine Brahimi, were also shortlisted.
Others are Barclays Premier League duo, Andre Ayew and Sadio Mane of Swansea and Southampton respectively; Tunisian defender, Aymen Abdennour, Sudan’s Mudather Eltaib Ibrahim, and Egyptian winger, Mohamed Salah.
The winner will be decided by votes of the Coaches or Technical Directors of the National Associations affiliated to CAF in an award gala to be held on Thursday, 7 January 2016 in Abuja, Nigeria.
Kanu Nwankwo in 2000 was the last Nigerian to have won this prestigious accolade with Austin Jay Jay Okocha, John Obi Mikel and Vincent Enyeama all coming close in the last 15 years.
List of 10 nominees
André Ayew (Ghana & Swansea)
Aymen Abdennour (Tunisia & Valencia)
Mudather Eltaib Ibrahim ‘Karika’ (Sudan & El Hilal)
Mohamed Salah (Egypt & Roma)
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (Gabon & Borussia Dortmund)
Sadio Mané (Senegal & Southampton)
Serge Aurier (Cote d’Ivoire & Paris Saint Germain)
Sofiane Feghouli (Algeria & Valencia)
Yacine Brahimi (Algeria & Porto)
Yaya Touré (Cote d’Ivoire & Manchester City)