Top Six Players To Look Out For At AFCON 2021
Top Six Players To Look Out For At AFCON
www.athleticshour.com | African Cup of Nations | Africa | Mohammed Salah| Sadio Mane| Riyad Mahrez | Eric Maxim Chapou-Moting | Achraf Hakimi | Sebastian Haller |
This ranking was not based on their market value but their current form in all competitions. The AFCON-2021 will witness great players and some countries are favourites to win it. Top six players to look out for at AFCON 2021
Can Algeria win back to back with their current squad?
Senegal also have a formidable team.
Host nation, Cameroon can cause a stir during the competition?
Ghana is also and underdog here.
Nigeria a team to watch.
The Africa Cup of Nations kicks off on Sunday in Cameroon, with Senegal, the continent’s top-ranked squad, and reigning champions Algeria considered as the teams to beat.
Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting – Cameroon
During his two-year stay at Paris Saint-Germain, where he was a back-up in attack to superstars Neymar and Kylian Mbappe, Choupo-Moting was expelled on several occasions. Despite this, he has scored 17 goals in 44 games for Bayern Munich since joining in 2020.
The 32-year-old, who is 1.91m tall, was born in Germany and began his career with Hamburg and Schalke before moving to Stoke City in the Premier League.
He represented the Indomitable Lions at the 2010 and 2014 World Cups and captained them at the Afcon in 2015 and 2017. He is eligible for Cameroon through his father. He did not attend the 2017 tournament in Gabon, when Cameroon won the title, but he is the most well-known member of the hosts’ side this year, as they attempt to win the trophy for the sixth time.
Sadio Mane – Senegal
According to FIFA rankings, Senegal is the best African team, and Liverpool forward Mane is their outstanding player. Mane, a former African Footballer of the Year who finished fourth in the Ballon d’Or rankings in 2019, will be missed by Liverpool when he returns to Cameroon, where he has 10 goals this season.
After Senegal’s loss to Algeria in the 2019 final, the 29-year-old is anxious to win Africa’s top award. The west African nation has never won a FIFA World Cup.
Achraf Hakimi – Morocco
Hakimi, a 23-year-old right-back who has previously played for Real Madrid, Borussia Dortmund, and Inter Milan, is perhaps the best attacking full-back in the world today. As a result, he will be the man to watch on a Moroccan team that is one of the favorites to win the tournament.
In principle, Hakimi, who joined PSG for 60 million euros ($71 million) from Inter last July, is a defender, but he is primarily a creative and attacking option down the right flank. Hakimi, who was born and raised in Madrid to Moroccan parents, scored his first competitive goal for the Atlas Lions when he was just 18 years old.
Mohammed Salah – Egypt
When Salah finished seventh in the final Ballon d’Or rankings in November, many friends scoff at him. It may be argued that the 29-year-old attacker, who has 54 goals for Liverpool since the start of last season, is the best player in the world right now.
Salah and Mane will be missed by Jurgen Klopp’s side for up to a month, but he carries the hopes and dreams of 100 million Egyptians on his shoulders. The Pharaohs are chasing a record-extending eighth African title, and he is the star of a side made up mostly of homegrown players.
Salah was part of the side that lost to Cameroon in the 2017 final before falling to South Africa in the last 16 in 2019.
Riyad Mahrez -Algeria
Riyad Mahrez is a Moroccan footballer who plays for Real Madrid (Algeria)
Mahrez, a former African Footballer of the Year, led Algeria to triumph in 2019 and is the team’s key player once again as they seek to defend their championship.
The winger has been in excellent form for Manchester City this season, scoring 13 goals in 25 outings for the Premier League champions. Mahrez, now 30, was born and raised in the Paris suburbs, but his late father was born in Algeria, and Riyad made his international debut right before the 2014 World Cup, not long after joining Leicester City.
Sebastien Haller – Ivory Coast
The tall 27-year-old striker has been one of the UEFA Champions League’s standout performers this season, hitting 10 goals in the group stage for Ajax. After Cristiano Ronaldo in 2017, he became only the second player in history to score in all six group games.
Haller, who has 22 goals this season, joined Ajax for 22.5 million euros ($27.5 million) in January, ending a disastrous career in England and returning to the Dutch division, where he had previously played.
He was born and raised in the Paris suburbs and played for France’s Under-21 team before accepting a call to represent the Ivory Coast, the country of his mother’s origin, at the age of 26.
Some memories at African Cup of Nations
🌍🏆 With #AFCON2021 starting this weekend, everyone is talking about the stars like Salah, Mané & Mahrez, but let’s not forget that the Best Player has often not been a “star”:
2019 🇩🇿 Bennacer
2017 🇨🇲 Bassogog
2015 🇬🇭 Atsu
2013 🇧🇫 Pitroipa
2012 🇿🇲 Katongo
2010 🇪🇬 Ahmed Hassan pic.twitter.com/q99hTsq4Fb
— Walid Ziani (@bylka613_) January 7, 2022