Radio France Internationale (RFI) has announced the list of nominees for the yearly Marc-Vivien Foé Award. The winner, recognized as the best African footballer in the French Ligue 1 championship over a 12-month period will be known on June 29th 2020.
Hailing from 6 different countries, with a domination from Senegalese and Nigerian players, this year’s nominees highlight the breadth and wealth of African talent playing in the French Ligue 1 championship. These players will be vying to succeed Ivorian forward Nicolas Pepe, winner of the 2019 award. A shortlist of just three nominees will be unveiled in early June, with the laureate to be announced later in the month.
The award is named after late Marc-Vivien Foé, former Cameroonian defensive midfielder footballer who suddenly passed away during a FIFA confederation cup match against Columbia on 26 June 2003 in France.
These are the nominees:
Yunis ABDELHAMID (Morocco / Stade de Reims) – Defender
The “Lion of the Atlas” is one of the great craftsmen of 6th placed Reims in the French ligue 1 championship. Yunis is the Moroccan figure in the All best season’s XI established by the renowned French magazine France Football and was rated as best defender by the newspaper L’Équipe. The 32-year-old player could finally discover the European Competition as his club is on the brink of participating in the Europa League.
Denis BOUANGA (Gabon / AS Saint-Etienne) – Forward
Arriving from Nîmes last summer, the 25-year-old Gabonese had a little trouble adjusting in his club during the first weeks of the championship. He was quick to catch up and resum with last season’s rhythm and performance that saw him rose from Nîmes to Saint Etienne. The versatile striker finished the season with 10 goals and 3 assists to his name in 26 Ligue 1 games. With “Les verts”, he has progressed to the lamp light, arousing the lusts from some big clubs.
Andy DELORT (Algeria / Montpellier HSC) – Forward
The African champion continued this season with an uprise momentum, after a radiant summer with the Algerian national side. Though he scored 9 goals in 26 games this season against 14 in 36 games during the 2018-2019 season, the 28-year-old striker seems perfectly fulfilled in his native region.
Habib DIALLO (Senegal / FC Metz) – Forward
The former resident of Génération Foot Fc (Senegal) perpetuates the tradition of talented Senegalese players who is walking in the footpaths of his predecessors through Metz FC (That has nursed Jules Bocandé, Ismaïla Sarr, Papiss Cissé and Sadio Mané over the years). After helping Metz move up to Ligue 1 in 2019, the 24-year-old center-forward helped the club be maintained in the french top flight with 12 goals in 26 games.
Idrissa GUEYE (Senegal / Paris SG) – Midfielder
Rarely has a defensive player been expected to produce as much as Gueye in a major club. Even if he is not a pure defensive midfielder, the Senegalese aged 30, recruited last summer by Everton (England), filled a glaring shortage in this position, with much consistency, rigour and ardour. this, to the point of quickly attracting the sympathy of PSG fans.
Edouard MENDY (Senegal / Stade rennais) – Goalkeeper
The “Lions of Teranga” are assured with the save hands of Mendy and Alfred Gomis, two excellent goalkeepers of Ligue 1. Gomis could also have been on this list if not of an injury contracted in early February. The goalkeeper of Stade Rennes, in any case, has confirmed with Rennes his fine performances from the seasons spent in Reims.
M’Baye NIANG (Senegal / Stade rennais) – Forward
At 25, the former great hope of French football has certainly not yet unleashed his full potential. But in Rennes, the one who opted for the Senegalese national side demonstrated that he was an imposing striker, scoring 10 goals this season.
Victor OSIMHEN (Nigeria / Lille LOSC) – Forward
Will the Nigerian be the fifth Lille player to becomr the best African player of the Ligue 1 championship, after Gervinho (2010, 2011), Vincent Enyeama (2014), Sofiane Boufal (2016) and Nicolas Pépé (2019)? The 21-year-old center-forward in any case illustrates the LOSC’s ability to find nuggets. With 13 goals and 4 assists in 27 games, the “Super Eagle” excelled above expectations.
Moses SIMON (Nigeria / FC Nantes) – Midfielder / Forward
Loaned by Levante, the Nigerian signed up for 4 years with Nantes where he has just been elected player of the season. This eccentric midfielder/twirling winger, aged 24, has split 5 goals and 5 assists in Ligue 1. Among the “Canaries”, Moses Simon has accumulated experience, haven played in the Netherlands, Slovakia, Belgium, and Spain. Nantes seems to be a favourable ground to find stability that will permit him be a starter with the “Super Eagles”.
Islam SLIMANI (Algeria / AS Monaco) – Forward
Through Portugal, England, and Turkey. Slimani is known for his precious goals and his ceaseless efforts. At Monacco, we discovered his technical finesse and his generosity in assists (8 assists and goals). The African champion has formed a beautiful duo with Wissam Ben Yedder. But, despite his high-class performances, the 31-year-old did not always have the confidence of the new Monegasque coach, Robert Moreno.
Hamari TRAORÉ (Mali / Stade Rennes) – Defender
Good side backs don’t run the streets. So Rennes will no doubt have to insist on keeping the Malian international. At 28 years old and after three seasons in Brittany, this straight side and full of drive aspires for greater challenges. The prospect of competing in the Champions League might push him to extend the adventure with the “Red and Black”.
It should be noted no Cameroonian is on the list, two Nigerians and a majority of Senegalese players. Rennes, more than any other club is most represented with 3 players.
Former winners of the Marc-Vivien Foé Prize Award
- Year Player Club
2009 Marouane Chamakh (Girondins de Bordeaux)
2010 Gervinho (LOSC Lille)
2011 Gervinho (2) (LOSC Lille)
2012 Younès Belhanda (Montpellier HSC)
2013 Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (AS Saint-Étienne)
2014 Vincent Enyeama (LOSC Lille)
2015 André Ayew (Olympique de Marseille)
2016 Sofiane Boufal (LOSC Lille)
2017 Jean Michaël Seri (OGC Nice)
2018 Karl Toko-Ekambi (Angers SCO)
2019 Nicolas Pépé (LOSC Lille)
Saint Etienne Employs Yvan Neyou full-Time
Sports Writer Mysoccer24.com-Cameroon
Multiple French champions Saint – Etienne have completed the full acquisition of midfield metronome Yvan Neyou, for three and a half seasons from Braga SC.
On Wednesday, the 10 times French Champions activated the option to make the starlet’s loan move permanent, for a reported fee of 200 000 €.
The 23-year-old has been head and shoulders above expectations, the reason why he’s moved from Sporting Braga to Saint Etienne, and is now valued at 2.5 M €.
Neyou now owes his services to Saint Etienne till 2024.
The Cameroonian, has appeared in nine of the first ten days of the French Ligue 1.
He has confirmed in recent weeks his excellent debut of the season with the ‘Greens’.
His standout moments were in the final of the Coupe de France against Paris Saint-Germain. He entered with a quarter of an hour left, and surprised with the ease, he played the game.
Neyou had formerly only been good in the previous seasons for the Braga reserve team.
The lad, born in Douala, passed through INF Clairefontaine. Before arriving Saint-Etienne via BRAGA FC, he had passed through Auxerre, Sedan Fc and Laval
In his own words after putting pen to paper, Neyou said: “the confidence of the coach, staff, and managers encourages me to give even more for the club and brings me serenity. Saint-Étienne offered me the opportunity to relaunch my career.
I’d do all not to be a flop’, Neyou ended.
Stephane Bahoken Doubles For Angers Against Nimes
Sports Writer Mysoccer24.com-Cameroon
Indomitable Lions goal – hunter Stephane Bahoken scored a brace for his club Angers, away to Nimes on Match day 10 of the French league 1.
There could not be a better time to add to his tally of two goals for the Cameroon International.
His two goals on Sunday now steps the former Strasbourg’ man to four goals and one assist, in 8 games in the French league 1.
Angers moves to mid-table (9) on the log, two points off champions League placed Rennes (3), on 18 points.
This comes to make the 28-year-old feel better. Stephane Bahoken was taken into police custody for domestically abusing his partner on October 27.
Stephane Bahoken will be leaking his lips to perhaps start as the first-choice striker when Cameroon battles Mozambique on November 12.
Lyon vs Monaco: Toko Ekambi now scoring in two’s
Sports Writer Mysoccer24.com-Cameroon
Goal droughts are now distant rumours for Cameroon’s 28-year-old wing-man, Karl Toko Ekambi, who now scores in two’s.
The 2017 AFCON winner got his second season double against Monaco, in match day 8 of the French league 1 championship on Sunday 25.
The former Villarreal and SCO Angers man had two bites at the cherry in his team’s 4-1 victory over Monaco, other goals coming from Memphis Depay and Housem Aouar.
Ekambi’s first of the game came at the 34th minute, with the second following only 10 minutes after (44th).
Lyon’s victory over Monaco takes them mid-table, with a chance to push for a more comfortable position on match day 9 against second on the log Lille.
Successive doubles against Strasbourg and Monaco, can only add Ekambi’s confidence going ahead, especially as he is tied on 6th place of top scorers in the French league 1.
Toko Ekambi’s tally of 17 goals back in the 2017/18 campaign remains his all time best by none.
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