Top five players from AFCON 2023 who could make a move to the Premier League after excelling in the Cote d'Ivoire.
After four weeks of action-packed football and entertainment, AFCON 2023 came to a pulsating end on Sunday evening with the host nation Ivory Coat once again crowned the champions of Africa for the third time in history.
The West Africans add to their previous Nations Cup wins in 1992 and 2015 and become the first tournament hosts to triumph since Egypt lifted the trophy in 2006.
This year's edition will be remembered for so many footballing reasons, and also for being the first-ever tournament to have a manager sacked mid-competition after Cote d'Ivoire fired Jean-Louis Gasset and replaced him with Emerse Fae who led the team to victory on home soil..
But also like every major tournament, players would have been looking to earn big-time moves to the Premier League off the back of impressive showings, so here is the list of five players who could move to England in the summer after impressing in Cote d'Ivoire.
The Nigerian isn’t a new name to Premier League fans having played Everton, Fulham and Leicester City before his move to Atalanta in the Italian Serie A. He’s been a major hit in Italy netting 13 goals last season and seven in the first round of this season before heading to the AFCON.
In the Cote d'Ivoire, he scored three important goals to help Nigeria to the final. Now aged 26, Lookman has lots of experience at both club and international level. he's also demonstrated his ability to play as an inverted winger- so don't be surprised to see him back in England soon.
Zaidu Sanusi - FC Porto
The FC Porto left-back has been so good for Nigeria on their way to the finals of AFCON 2023. Sanusi has been one of the unsung heroes of the Nigeria team. Blessed with incredible skill, pace and power, the 26-year-old is already proven in European football with Portuguese giants FC Porto.
He is the kind of player that will settle quickly into a mid-table Premier League side.
The Ivorian fits the profile of a typical Premier League box-to-box midfielder. He loves a good run, isn't afraid to get himself dirty and passes the ball quite well too. He was one of the best players in the Lens team that defied the odds and finished second in the French League last season.
In the summer he earned a big-money move to Al Nassr to play with Cristiano Ronaldo in Saudi Arabia but a good offer from a Premier League could tempt him. He's got the physical attributes of Yaya Toure and could be the next coming of the Manchester City legend.
To be fair to Osimhen he didn’t need the AFCON to show the world of football that he is ready for a big leap to the Premier League after his record-breaking performance with Napoli that helped them win their first league title since the days of Diego Maradona.What this AFCON has shown though is that he can be an enviable team player- he's put himself second and worked to take Nigeria all the way. He's been linked to both Arsenal and Chelsea.
It’s rare to see African goalkeepers playing at the top level in Europe, I mean until Andre Onana at Manchester United and before him Edouard Mendy at Chelsea it was hard to see African goalkeepers at top Premier League clubs.
It's even much more difficult to find one who comes directly from an African team to the English League but Stanley Nwabali has been a giant in post for Nigeria. He’s conceded only a goal from open play in 6 games. The Chippa United shot-stopper would be a good gamble for a lower-table premiership side.2024-02-12T09:41:56Z dg43tfdfdgfd