Excitement fills the air as the Confederation of African Football (CAF) reveals the final shortlist for the prestigious 2023 CAF Men's Player of the Year award.
Among the elite contenders vying for this coveted title are Victor Osimhen of Super Eagles and Napoli, Egypt's Mohamed Salah, and Morocco's Achraf Hakimi, as reported by Completesports.com.
The highly anticipated announcement was made by CAF through their official X handle, setting the stage for a thrilling competition among these exceptional football talents.
Victor Osimhen, the prolific striker from Nigeria, is eyeing the opportunity to make history by becoming the first Nigerian player since Nwankwo Kanu in 1999 to clinch the prestigious award. The 24-year-old recently added another accolade to his collection by being named the Italian Footballers' Association (AIC) Player of the Year for the 2022/23 Serie A season during a ceremony in Milan on Monday.
Mohamed Salah, a seasoned player from Egypt, is no stranger to the limelight, having previously secured the CAF Men's Player of the Year title twice in 2017 and 2018. The Liverpool forward brings a wealth of experience and skill to the competition.
Achraf Hakimi, the talented Moroccan, is aiming to make history by becoming the first Moroccan player to win the award since Mustapha Hadji in 1998. His outstanding performances have earned him a well-deserved spot among the finalists.
The excitement doesn't end there for Nigerian football enthusiasts, as other players from the country have also made it to the final shortlist in various categories. Asisat Oshoala, Deborah Abiodun, and Chiamaka Nnadozie are among those who will be competing for honors in their respective fields.
Oshoala, the formidable striker, is in contention to defend her Women's Player of the Year title and faces competition from Barbara Banda of Zambia and Thembi Kgatlana of South Africa.
Nnadozie, showcasing her skills between the posts, is a strong contender for the Goalkeeper of the Year award, while Abiodun has secured her place as a final nominee for the Women's Young Player of the Year.
In addition to individual honors, CAF has also shortlisted Nigeria for the 2023 Women's National Team of the Year, with stiff competition from Morocco and South Africa.
The stage is set for a thrilling announcement of the winners on Monday, 11 December, in Marrakech, Morocco, where football enthusiasts eagerly await to see who will emerge victorious in these prestigious categories.