CAF Nominate Iwobi, Iheanacho For Awards
Nigeria starlets Kelechi Iheanacho and Alex Iwobi, as well as Super Falcons forward Asisat Oshoala and coach Florence Omagbemi have been nominated for honours at the 2016 CAF Awards.
Nigeria got seven nominations in the 13 other categories released by the Confederation of African Football.
The awards ceremony will take place in Abuja on 5 January, 2017.
In the category of Most Promising Talent award, Manchester City’s Iheanacho is listed with fellow Nigerian Oghenekaro Etebo, Guinean Naby Keita, Elia Meshack of DR Congo and Ramadan Soby of Egypt.
Iheanacho scored in four consecutive matches for the Super Eagles — against Mali, Luxembourg, Tanzania and Zambia — and has been impressive for his English clubside.
Etebo was the hero of Nigeria’s bronze medal feat at the Rio 2016 Olympics in Brazil, scoring four goals in the 5-4 thumping of Japan.
The Youth Player of the Year award list is headed by Arsenal’s Alex Iwobi.
He scored Nigeria’s first goal of the 2018 FIFA World Cup qualifying campaign, away to Zambia in Ndola in October.
Iwobi has to contest with Ghanaians Eric Ayiah and Sandra Owusu-Ansah, Ivorian Franck Kessie and Mali under-20 player Sidiki Maiga.
Meanwhile, Arsenal ladies Nigerian forward Asisat Oshoala was listed alongside South African Janine Van Wyk for theWomen’s Player of the Year award.
Others are Ghanaian Elizabeth Addo and Cameroonians Gabrielle Onguene and Raissa Tchuanyo.
Oshoala won the award in 2014, alongside being named Youth Player of the Year.
In the meantime, Florence Omagbemi, the only person to have won the Women Africa Cup of Nations as captain and coach, is in the running for the Coach of the Year award.
She has to contend with DR Congo’s Florent Ibenge and Uganda’s coach Milutin Sredojevic.
Nigeria’s Super Falcons will battle for Women’s Team of the Year award with Cameroon, Ghana, South Africa and Zimbabwe.
Nigeria’s under-23 male team, who were bronze medal winners at the Rio Olympics, will slug it out with four others for the Men’s Team of the Year award.
The others include DR Congo who won the 2016 CHAN winners.
Also contending for this award with the Nigerian team is Senegal, as well as Guinea Bissau and Uganda who were nominated for qualifying for 2017 AFCON.