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CAF awards: How Nigerian voters shunned Oshoala, Ighalo, Osimhen

How the winners for the men and women categories of the Africa Player of the Year awards were voted for have been released by the Confederation of African Football.

The voting pattern, which was released on CAF’s website, showed that out of the five Nigerians who were on the voting panel, only Nwankwo Kanu and Perpetua Nkwocha had a Nigerian footballer as their number one choice.

Kanu voted Odion Ighalo as his Player of the Year, ahead of Mohamed Salah, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Riyad Mahrez and Sadio Mane, while Nkwocha voted Oshoala as her Women’s Player of the Year.

Thembi Kgatlana, Gabrielle Ougene, Tabitha Chaminga and Ajara Nchout were Nkwocha’s other choices in second, third, fourth and fifth positions respectively.

Kanu had Oshoala as his fifth best player, while Nkwocha did not vote any Super Eagles player in her top five.

Nigeria had three other delegates in the voting panel, journalists Osasu Obayiuwana and Chisom Ezeoke, and Tunde Adelakun.

In the men’s category, Obayiuwana had Ghana’s Thomas Partey as his best player, placing Wilfred Ndidi as second, ahead of Aubameyang, Salah and Mane.

He voted Oshoala as his third best player in the women’s category, behind Super Falcons goalkeeper Chiamaka Nnadozie and Nchout in first and second places respectively, while Kgatlana and Chaminga were his fourth and fifth choices respectively.

Ezeoke had Ighalo and Nnadozie in third position in the men and women’s categories respectively, only placing Oshoala as her fourth choice.

She had Salah as her top choice for the men’s award, with Mahrez as second; Ismail Bennacer, fourth choice and eventual winner Mane as her fifth choice.

Adelakun also had Ighalo as third in the men’s category and Oshoala as fourth in the women’s category, favouring Salah to win for men and Ange N’Guessan for women.

He had Youcef Belaili in second, Mahrez in fourth and Mane in fifth for the men’s award and Uchenna Kanu as second; Refiloe Jane, third and Kgatlana as her fifth choice.

Oshoala was only able to win due to votes she garnered from coaches and captains of national teams, as she was second with 129 votes from the media, technical and legends voters, behind Nchout who 133 votes.

The coach and captain of Nigeria also voted Oshoala as their third choice behind Kgatlana and Nchout.

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