It has gone from bad to worse as Nigeria has completely lost out of reckoning as the Confederation of Africa Football (CAF) have completely ignored Nigeria for the CAF Awards 2022 men’s categories, yet again.
When the initial list was released recently, only the Super Eagles’ duo of Moses Simon and Akinkunmi Amoo made the list. Simon was listed for the Player of the Year award, while Amoo was listed for the Young Player of the Year award.
It will be noted that since Kanu Nwankwo last won the coveted African Player of the Year award in 1999, no Nigerian player has won it. The closest was Mikel Obi who came second in the 2013 award to Yaya Toure.
Nigeria has only won the award five times with Emmanuel Amuneke being the first Nigerian to win it in 1994, before Kanu won it in 1996. A year later, Victor Ikpeba was named the best player before Kanu reclaimed the title two years later.
The CAF Awards 2022 will be held in Rabat, Morocco on July 21.
However, the final list has reigning CAF African Player of the Year, Sadio Mane (Senegal and Bayern Munich), amongst others.
There are also former winners, Riyad Mahrez (Algeria and Manchester City) and Mohamed Salah (Egypt and Liverpool).
One of the highly-contested categories is that of the CAF Coach of the Year, where Aliou Cisse, Pitso Mosimane, Carlos Queiroz, Tom Saintfiet and Walid Regragui have made the final cut.
The Player of the Year and Interclub Player of the Year categories have 10 nominees each.
The Young Player of the Year, Coach of the Year, National Team of the Year and Club of the Year categories have five nominees each.
The winners of each category will be decided by a voting panel, which will include CAF Technical Committee members, and selected media professionals.
The panel will also have head coaches and captains of member associations and clubs involved in the group stage of the Interclub competitions for the 2021/22 season.
The women’s categories’ final shortlist will be announced in due course.