The African footballer of the year award is presented to only players who represent an African country as the name implies. However, it has been awarded by the Confederation of African Football (CAF) since 1992 after France football magazine halted the African footballer of the year golden ball award. Furthermore, the CAF Sponsored award is presented to the best African footballer per year.
As revealed by CAF, the players highlighted below are the winners of the African footballer of the year award from 1992 to date. As far as I know, as an African, you will enjoy reading this article because it is educating and interesting.
1992: Abedi Pele (Ghana) –
Abedi Pele played as a professional attacking midfielder during his active career. He is among the greatest African footballer of all time. Moreover, he got fame playing for European clubs like Lille and Olympique Marseille in France Ligue 1. Additionally, he won the UEFA Champions League with Marseille among all other trophies.
1994: Emmanuel Amunike (Nigeria) –
Emmanuel Amunike played as a winger during his active career. He is among the greatest Nigerian footballer of all time. In addition, he was very prolific playing for Sporting CP and Zamalek. Currently, Emunike is an academy supervisor of Misr Lel Makkasa.
1995: George Weah (Liberia) –
George Weah is the first and only African player to win the Ballon d’Or award. Also, he is the first African former professional footballer to become the head of state. The Liberian forward is among the greatest players of all time.
1996, 1999: Kanu Nwankwo (Nigeria) –
Kanu Nwankwo is among the best players in African football history. Moreover, the former Nigerian forward is a two-time holder of the African footballer of the year award. Also, his most successful spell as a player was at Ajax Amsterdam. He won his first African footballer of the year award at Inter Milan and the other at Arsenal in EPL.
1997: Victor Ikpeba (Nigeria) –
Victor Ikpeba was the second Nigerian in a row to win the African footballer of the year after Kanu. He played as a striker during his active career for club and country. However, the former Nigerian forward represented his father’s land at two FIFA World Cup and helped to win the 1994 AFCON title. He achieved success at Monaco which earned him the African footballer of the year award.
1998: Mustapha Hadji (Morocco) –
An African football expert listed Mustapha Hadji as the 50th greatest African player of all time. During his active career, he was a goal-scoring attacking midfielder. However, the former Deportivo La Coruna forward was the first Moroccan to win the new African footballer of the year award. He won it at the Spanish club.
2000: Patrick M’Boma (Cameroon) –
Patrick M’Boma played as a striker during his active career. He was the former all-time top goal scorer of the Cameroon national team. Moreover, he won the African footballer of the year award after leading Cameroon to the 2000 AFCON final which they won.
2001, 2002: El Hadji Diouf (Senegal) –
El Hadji Diouf played is mainly deployed as a striker but sometimes plays from the wing. He is among the most prolific players of Senegal. Moreover, he won his consecutive African footballer of the year award at Lens in France and Liverpool in the English Premier League.
2003, 2004, 2005, 2010: Samuel Eto’o (Cameroon) –
Samuel Eto’o is not only among the best strikers in the world but also one of the greatest African players of all time. Additionally, he is the record holder of the African footballer of the year award, he has won the award on four occasions. Furthermore, he is the all-time highest goal scorer and the third most capped player of Cameroon.
2006, 2009: Didier Drogba (Ivory Coast) –
Didier Drogba is not only the fourth highest goal scorer of all time of Chelsea but also among the greatest players of the club. Moreover, he is the all-time goal scorer and former captain Ivory Coast national team. Additionally, he is a two-time African footballer of the year award winner and also the first Ivorian to land the honor. No other player has made the top three than Didier Drogba.
2007: Frederic Kanoute (Mali) –
Frederic Kanoute played as a striker for various top tier teams in Europe throughout his career. However, his most successful and memorable spell was at La Liga with Sevilla. Also, he is Sevilla’s highest-scoring foreign player. He played for France in all international youth levels but represented Mali, his father’s country in senior levels. Furthermore, Kanoute is a one-time winner of the African footballer of the year award.
2008: Emmanuel Adebayor (Togo) –
Emmanuel Adebayor is a professional footballer who plays as a striker. Moreover, he is among the greatest players who come and represent an African country. In addition, he currently plays for Club Olimpia in Paraguay. Finally, Adebayor is a one-time African footballer of the year award winner.
2011, 2012, 2013, 2014: Yaya Touré (Ivory Coast) –
Yaya Touré has played as a box to box midfielder for club and country. Moreover, he is a joint record holder of the African footballer of the year award with former Cameroonian star Samuel Eto’o. In addition, Yaya Touré is among the greatest African players in the world. The most notable moments of his career was at Barcelona and Manchester City. Currently, the Ivorian star plays for the Chinese Super League club Qingdao Huanghai.
2015: Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (Gabon) –
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang plays for Premier League club Arsenal and Gabon national team. In addition, he is the captain of his club and country. Gabon forward is among the best attackers in the world. Furthermore, Aubameyang is the first Gabonese star to win the African footballer of the year award.
2016: Riyad Mahrez (Algeria) –
Riyad Mahrez plays for Premier League club Manchester City and captains the Algerian national team. Furthermore, he is among the best wingers in EPL. Moreover, the Algerian star led his country to victory in the 2019 AFCON final over Senegal. Mahrez is a one-time winner of the African footballer of the year award.
2017, 2018, 2019: Mohamed Salah (Egypt) –
Mohamed Salah plays for Premier League club Liverpool and Egypt national team. Moreover, he is among the best players currently in the world. He has followed the steps of former Man City star Yaya Touré in winning the African player of the year award. However, he is a three-time winner of the prestigious CAF’s award.