Sportscliffs: Greatest African footballers in football history

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African have showcase themselves in the not only in football but in all sport generally, and they have got so many talents.

Focus have always been European footballers forgetting that there are incredible players in Africa.

African players have showed their talents home and abroad as some of them have achieved so far in European world.

Here are top ten past African footballers in the history football according to sportscliffs

  • Yaya Toure: Yaya Toure of Ivory Coast was a midfielder as he played for Barcelona and also played in the Premier League for Manchester City.

The Ivorian was effective during his time of play when it come to handling midfield duties.

Yaya Toure has won numerous awards individually and also collectively.

Yaya Toure was crowned the African footballer of the year four times and also he Ivory Coast claim the African Cup of Nations in the year 2015.

Toure won three La Liga titles with Spanish Giant Barcelona before moving to Manchester City where he won three Premier League title with the Etihad side as he became only the second midfielder to score 20 goals in a single Premier season in 2014.

He fell out of favour following the arrival of Pep Guardiola, he was able to secure one more league title in 2018 before moving on to Olympiacos.

  • Kanu Nwakwo: His name can not be forgotten by Nigerians for his incredible work on the pitch.

Kanu was known for his playing style despite his physical appearance he was strong on the ball.

The Nigerian won the Olympics gold in the year 1996 with the Super Eagles and also represented his country in three World cup.

Nwakwo Kanu was crowned the African footballer twice.

The Nigeria won the Champions League with Dutch side Ajax and the Premier League with Arsenal.

  • Abedi Ayew ‘Pele’: Abedi Pele was named after the famous Brazilian star ‘Pele’ and he was one of the greatest players to have played in the early 90s.

Abedi Ayew played and starred for Marseille, he helped them win back-to-back Ligue 1 titles and to also help them reach a Champions League final, which he later won with the club in 1993.

He won the AFCON with Ghana in 1982 and a decade later was named player of the tournament as the Black Stars lost in the final to the Ivory Coast.

Named in the top three Africans of all time by IFFHS and a three-time African Player of the Year winning.

With his skills and efforts, he unfortunately never had the chance to showcase his skills in a World Cup with Ghana.

  •  Jay-Jay Okocha: Like they say he was so good that they named him twice (Jay -Jay).

Jay-Jay Okacha was known for his dribble and skills, he humiliated defenders and keepers with his skills.

Okocha was no doubt one of the gifted midfielders of his generation who also played in Europe.

Okocha played for numerous clubs like Paris Saint Germain, Fenerbahçe, Bolton, Hull City and among others.

Okocha won the AFCON in 1994 and secured Olympic goal with the Super Eagles two years later, while he was AFCON joint top scorer and the competition’s outstanding individual in 2004.

Despite the talent of Jay-Jay Okocha he never won a league title.

  •  Micheal Essien: The Ghanian was one of the best during his playing time and played as a midfielder.

Essien didn’t achieve in his country side but was incredible for his club side.

The Ghanian thrived at Chelsea, having won two premier league and a Champions League with the London side.

  •  Didier Drogba: The Ivorian was one of the best African strikers, he scores goal with ease and can not be forgotten at Chelsea.

The Ivorian won four Premier League titles, he won four FA Cups, three League Cups and, in the most dramatic and glorious of circumstances, the Champions League. He was named Chelsea’s Player of the Year and Players’ Player of the Year and won the Premier League Golden Boot twice.


  • Samuel Eto’o: Eto’o is one of the most decorated African players that played in Europe.

The Cameroonian has won three Champions Leagues with Barcelona and Inter, while he was named Man of the Match as Barca defeated Arsenal in the 2006 decider.

Eto’o won two AFCON tournaments and is the top scorer in the tournament’s history while also scooping Olympic gold and also represented the Cameroon in three World Cups.

  • Goerge Weah: Weah was named African Footballer of the Year three times,

In 1995, Weah became the first and still only the African player to win the Ballon d’Or to add to his European Footballer of the Year and FIFA World Player of the Year crowns for that year.





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