Yaya Toure of Ivory Coast has relinguished his dominance of the continent’s football as he lost the illustrious position as the African Footballer of the Year to Gabon’s Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang following the ceremony the Glo/CAF awards held Thursday night in Abuja.
Toure had won the award for four consecutive years before Thursday when Aubameyang was named the winner beating him and Ghana’s Andre Ayew to the title. All three soccer stars were in Abuja for the event. Winner Aubameyang arrived in the country on Wednesday while Ayew whose father Abedi Pele is a previous winner hailed his reception as soon as he got into Abuja on Thursday.
“I’m in Abuja now. Received with love,” he tweeted.
The event held at the International Conference Centre has given the Gabonese the biggest individual award in African football. Samuel Eto’o of Cameroon is the only other player to have won the African biggest label for four consecutive years.
Mbwana Aly Samatta of Botswana was voted the African Player of the Year Based in Africa.
Most Promising Talent was given to Oghenekaro Etebo of the Nigeria U-23 team. It was double for Nigeria talent-wise as Victor Osimhen of the Golden Eaglets won the Youth Player of the Year. Coach of the Year was given to Herve Renard who coached the Ivory Coast to the 2015 African cup. The former coach of Zambia beat Nigeria’s Emmanuel Amunike who led Nigeria to the 2015 FIFA U-15 trophy.
Gaelle Enganamouit of Cameroon beat Nigeria’s Ngozi Ebere to the Women’s Player of the Year. Referee of the Year went to Bakary Papa Gassama of The Gambia. African Legends awards were presented to both Charles Gyamfi (Ghana) and Samuel Leppe (Cameroon).
Ivory Coast won National Team of the Year. They beat Ghana Black Stars and Nigeria U-17 side. Cameroonian ladies were voted the Women’s National Team of the Year. The Fair Play award went to Allez Casa of Senegal – the Senegalese football supporters club. TP Mazembe are the Club of the Year. They won the last CAF Champions League.
The event was also musical with the performance of young Bez being one of the major highlights. His delivery was made more majestic when he was joined on stage by King Sunny Ade adding another dimension from a different generation. Legendary Salif Keita of Mali moved from individual performance to a duet when Omawunmi of Nigeria joined him to perform the popular hit song Africa.