Marc-Vivien Foé Prize 2023: the 11 nominees for the succession of the Ivorian Séko Fofana

The 11 nominees (from left to right) Achraf Hakimi, Chancel Mbemba, Habib Diallo, Hamari Traoré, Mama Baldé, Marshall Munetsi, Mohamed Camara, Salis-Abdul Samed, Séko Fofana, Terem Moffi, Yunis Abdelhamid © AFP-Reuters photos/RFI editing

Text by: Ndiasse Sambe Follow

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On May 30, RFI and France 24 will unveil the name of the best African player in the France Football Championship (Ligue 1). Who will succeed Ivorian Seko Fofana, the last winner of the Marc-Vivien Foé Prize? Here are, in alphabetical order, the 11 finalists of the 2023 edition.


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ABDELHAMID Yunis, defender (Morocco/Reims)

A model of regularity. Nominated last year, third in the ranking in 2020, the captain of Stade de Reims alone embodies the stability of the Champagne club. Patron of a defense that has gone 19 consecutive games without defeat, the Atlas Lion is probably having the best season of his career at 35 years old.

BALDÉ Mama, striker (Guinea-Bissau/Troyes)

At the heart of a team struggling to maintain, the Bissau-Guinean striker stands out as one of Troyes' best elements this season. It is obvious that Mama Baldé, 27, has reached a great milestone this year that has already seen her break her record of goals (7) over a season and attract the attention of clubs more upscale than Troyes.

CAMARA Mohamed, midfielder (Mali/Monaco)

Arrived on tiptoe on the Rock, the Malian was scrutinized, because expected as the replacement of Aurélien Tchouaméni left for Real Madrid. A few months later, Mohamed Camara, 23, proves that the Monegasque leaders were not wrong. Combative, tireless in midfield, the Eagle (re) forms a new duo of shock with Youssouf Fofana in Ligue 1.

DIALLO Habib, striker (Senegal/Strasbourg)

Never has a Senegalese won the Marc-Vivien Foé Prize prize. Will Habib Diallo put an end to the Lions' famine? The 27-year-old Strasbourg native has never looked as strong in Ligue 1 as this season, despite his club's worries in the race to maintain. Effective scorer in the 18 meters, he carries with him the Alsatian hopes to stay in the elite.

FOFANA Seko, midfielder (Côte d'Ivoire/Lens)

The titleholder is there to defend his property. Seko Fofana, captain and guide of RC Lens, managed another high-flying season in the image of his club, candidate for a qualification to the Champions League. Recuperator, passer, and scorer, the 27-year-old Ivorian is still decisive this season with the Blood and Gold. Enough to keep his crown and achieve the double?

HAKIMI Achraf, defender (Morocco/PSG)

The Moroccan, one of the Atlas Lions' best players at the 2022 World Cup, is still important at PSG where he remains a starter on the right side of the defence. In his second season in the French capital, in a team of stars, he pulls out of the game with goals and assists.

MBEMBA Chancel, defender (DR Congo/Marseille)

In the demanding Marseille club, the Congolese DRC did not hang around to put the fans in his pocket. Regular defender, eye-catching, technical and scorer in addition, Chancel Mbemba is without doubt, with the Chilean Alexis Sanchez, the best player of OM this season. At 28, will he be the second sacred Leopard after Gaël Kakuta in 2021?

MOFFI Terem, striker (Nigeria/Nice)

Moved from Lorient to Nice during the season, the 23-year-old Super Eagle certainly needed some time to adapt, but did not lose his effectiveness in front of goal. Nice intends to make the Nigerian one of the heads of the gondola for its national and European ambitions; That's good, Moffi is ready to pass the big course.

MUNETSI Marshall, midfielder (Zimbabwe/Reims)

At 26 years old, the Warrior is having his best season in four years and his arrival at Stade de Reims. The Zimbabwean international is the master of the Champagne midfielder in his role of torchbearer who allows him to be effective in recovery and decisive offensively with goals and assists.

TRAORÉ Hamari, defender (Mali/Rennes)

Like last year, the 31-year-old Malian is among the first nominees for the Marc-Vivien Foé Award. He even finished second ahead of Morocco's Nayef Aguerd and behind Ivorian Seko Fofana. Captain and right-back of Stade Rennais, Traoré, despite an injury this season, remains the guide of the Breton club, for his sixth (and last?) season in Rennes.

SAMED Salis Abdul, midfielder (Ghana/Lens)

In Lens, there is Seko Fofana, but there is also Salis Abdul Samed; Ghanaian, tireless midfielder and ideal complement to the Ivorian captain of Lens in the midfield. The Black Star is in the process of signing a full season for its third year in France, after two years at Clermont. To the delight of the Blood and Gold.

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