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Nigeria loses on all fronts

* Glo/CAF Awards

By Tony Ubani, who was in Accra

NIGERIAN football, in Accra,  faced the truth its officials need to embrace – that the country’s football is fast dwindling and something drastic has to be done about the downward trend.  And the truth was that in Africa, the best 11players were selected without one Nigerian on the list.

sports minister

That out of the awards given to the best players in Africa, no Nigerian player was found worthy to also get close to the best three. Nigerians who thronged the State banquet hall in Accra for the Glo/CAF Awards used their hands to support their heads in astonishment. The shame was indescribable.

For Stephen Keshi who was recognised as an African Football Legend, Nigeria,  the largest black nation in the World that boasts of having footballers all over the world including troubled spots like Iran, Iraq, Sudan would not have been mentioned. Apparently, aware of the night of shame, top NFA officials stayed away.  Only former NPL chairman Oyuki Obaseki was around. But his presence meant nothing as Nigeria had no place in the setting. Nigeria even lost its traditional Best Supporters Club award to South Africa.

President of Nigerian supporters Club (Worldwide) Dr. Rafiu Ladipo, was livid and said that those administering football must wake up from their slumber and save Nigerian football from imminent doom. “It’s a shame that no Nigerian won awards here. It shows how fast we are losing grip on the continent. I feel sad that CAF gave out our award (Supporters award) to South Africa. They have no supporters club. What they have is Vuvuzela which makes noise. That is not support. But I am worried at the future of Nigerian football?”, Ladipo lamented.

All the Award winners

Glo-CAF Player of the Year
Didier Drogba (Chelsea and Cote d’Ivoire)
Inter-Club Player of the Year
Mputu Mabi (T.P. Mazembe and DR Congo)
National Team of the Year
Algeria
Club of the Year
T.P. Mazembe (DR Congo)
Young Player of the Year
Dominic Adiyiah (AC Milan and Ghana U-20)
Coach of the Year
Sellas Tetteh (Ghana U-20)
Fair Play Award
Al Hilal fans
Best Supporters Club
South Africa Supporters Club
African Football Legend
Stephen Keshi (Nigeria)
Jules Bocande (Senegal)
Osvaldo Saturnino de Oliviera “Jesus” (Angola)
Platinum Award
Prof. John Evans Atta Mills, President of the Republic of Ghana
CAF Best XI
Goalkeeper — Muteba Kidiaba (T.P Mazembe and

DR Congo)
Defenders — John Pantsil (Fulham and Ghana), Nadir Belhadj (Portsmouth
and Algeria), Wael Gomaa (Al-Ahly and Egypt)

Midfielders — Alexander Song (Arsenal and Cameroon), Michael Essien
(Chelsea and Ghana), Seydou Keita (Barcelona and Mali), Yaya Toure (Barcelona and Cote d’Ivoire)
Attackers — Tresor Mputu Mabi (T.P. Mazembe and DR Congo), Samuel
Eto’o (Inter Milan and Cameroon), Didier Drogba (Chelsea and Cote d’Ivoire).


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