CAF President Mr. Issa Hayatou set the scene in his opening remarks at last night’s GLO-CAF Awards reflecting on a tremendous year for African football. “ The African footballers have in the calendar year thrilled us from Luanda , Johannesburg, passing through Lubumbashi, Rabat, Niamey, Gaborone, London and Milan with unimaginable moments of joy”, said Mr. Hayatou.
That joy abounded for Samuel Eto’o Fils who won his fourth African Footballer of the Year Award in Cairo Monday night, December 20 and humbly refused the label that in so doing he now is the best Africa player ever to play the game. Aware that wins like this will inevitable start debate on meaning of these honors and achievements, Eto’o said “To win Footballer of the year four times is to create a new record but l don’t think it gives me right to say l am the best. “ Eto’o widened the scope of the discussion even further by saying “There were greats in previous generations who had different challenges and situations to me. You can’t really compare”
But then Eto’o has always been magnanimous and complimentary to others and he was applauded himself by runner up Asamoah Gyan who said about Eto’o “He is a great player who has been fantastic example to many of us in Africa. I hope one day l will also win this award like him, it has been a very good year for me and l’ am happy for Eto’o ‘s record win.”
Nigerian star striker Perpetua Nkwocha was also creating here own history on the night. She won The Woman Footballer of the Year for a record third time and revealed that the win was giving her an unforeseen headache. “I was thinking of retiring from playing after this season but now that l have won l will have to look at that decision again.”
“It really is an honor to win this award and to win three times is very special”, Said Nkwocha
Nkwocha also shared her thoughts on what she felt was a difficult call on selection for the Women’s team of the year in 2010. “Maybe in future there should be two awards for national senior women’s team of the year award and national junior women’s team award because the Falcon U20 team also deserved an award tonight.” she said
One of the recipients of the Presidential awards for this year and host of FIFA 2010 World Cup, South Africa Football Association President Mr. Kirsten Nematandani summed up the night’s proceedings saying” “It has been a very good night during which those who played a crucial role in Africa’s wonderful football year have been recognised. We are proud to have been part of the continent’s successful football story in 2010. “-Cafonline
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