Top 10 Most Promising African Footballers

Discussion in 'Africa' started by tomaszlegg, Nov 10, 2005.

  1. tomaszlegg

    tomaszlegg New Member

    Aug 13, 2005
    Torquay, UK
    I have compiled a list of the ten players I believe will be the next stars of African football. If anyone disagrees with the list or thinks I have missed any potential stars out, then please feel free to comment. The list is complied in a random order;

    1. Taye Taiwo: Marseille and Nigeria; Nigeria's powerful left back Taye Taiwo was one of the revelations of the FIFA World Youth Championships. Earning the third top player award, the roving fullback with a wicked left-footed shot brought bags of confidence to the Nigeria team throughout the championships.

    2. Godwin Antwi: Liverpool and Ghana; Strong imposing defender who was bought to Liverpool from Real Zaragoza in the summer. Can play in the center of defense or in the holding role in midfield.

    3. John Obi Mikel: Lyn (Man Utd or Chelsea) and Nigeria; Club confusion aside, John Obi is an amazingly talented footballer able to control and dictate the pattern of play. Tall, elegant and powerful, the playmaker held his nerve to eventually convert the important penalty and hand his team the cushion of a 2-0 lead against Switzerland in the countries all-important third game of the FIFA Youth Championships. Great things are expected of this 18-year-old.

    4. Jonathan Quartey: Heart of Lion and Ghana; Tall, strong and confident. Showing all the signs of an excellent no-nonsense defender.

    5. Isaac Promise: Gençlerbirligi and Nigeria; A fast and skillful striker. Isaac who signed a four-year deal with Gençlerbirligi in the summer scored one goal in the FIFA Youth Championships, but with a number of impressive performances, managed to come away from the tournament with a big reputation. I am a little skeptical about his move to Turkey as im not to sure weather it is the right environment to nurture and improve a player like Isaac, but only time will tell.

    6. Momodou Ceesay: Wallidan and Gambia; Strong and skillful Gambian striker who's partnership with Osmane Jallow in the recent under 17 World Cup in Peru was arguably one of the most attractive to watch (along with Dos Santos and Vela for Mexico, Sahin and Kose Tevfik for Turkey). He managed to score two goals in three games, with his most impressive display coming in the 3-1 beating of then reigning champions Brazil. Here's a link to an article posted on the FIFA website the day after the game;,1451,109674,00.html?articleid=109674
    A true star in the making.

    7. Agyemang Opoku: Ashanti Gold and Ghana; the star of the 2005 Africa under 17 Championships. His pace, power and vision makes him a constant handful for opposition defenders.

    8. Dennis Oliech: Al Arabi (Nantes from January) and Kenya; Even at the age of just 20, he is possible the best player to have ever come out of Kenya. The first Kenyan to play in France after recently being snapped up by FC Nantes on a four-year deal and personally I jumped with joy when I hear the news. Having grown up in Nairobi and now visiting the country at least twice a year, this is the one thing Kenyan football needs at the moment. Dennis strength, speed and directness are the most appealing aspects of his game and with a four year deal with one of the best youth set-ups in France, im sure they will be able to nurture and improve him into a top class striker. Remember the name!!

    9. Ismael Beko Fofana: Academy mimos-sifcom and Cote d'lvoire; May not be the strongest forward, but has an amazing eye for goal, with four in five games in the African under 17 Championships. He's also got amazing pace!!

    10. Osmane Jallow: Wallidan and Gambia; Tall, athletic and blessed with the gift to burst through defenses. He proved that description in the recent under 17 World Cup with two goals in three games.
  2. ChaChaFut

    ChaChaFut Member

    Jun 30, 2005
    I think the only one I've seen play is Taye Taiwo, but too little to have any real impression of his talent. Do Antwi, Quartey, Opoku, or Beko Fofana have any chances of playing the World Cup?
  3. Saukrates

    Saukrates Member

    Sep 17, 2001
    3. John Obi Mikel: Lyn (Man Utd or Chelsea) and Nigeria; Club confusion aside, John Obi is an amazingly talented footballer able to control and dictate the pattern of play. Tall, elegant and powerful, the playmaker held his nerve to eventually convert the important penalty and hand his team the cushion of a 2-0 lead against Switzerland in the countries all-important third game of the FIFA Youth Championships. Great things are expected of this 18-year-old.

    he potentialy might be the best defensive midfield talent to come out of Africa,the kid has poise and a good footballing brain.
  4. tomaszlegg

    tomaszlegg New Member

    Aug 13, 2005
    Torquay, UK
    I would be really surprised if any of those four players make their respected countries World Cup squads. Antwi is 17, Quartey 17, Opoku 16 and Fofana has just turned 17. The only one out of those four who could possible get a place in a World Cup squad would be Antwi, primarily because he plays in Europe and might be seen as having more experience (although he is still to make his Liverpool debut because he is spending the 2005/06 season in the reserves to develop). I hope the other three develop well over the next two or three years, possible get a move to a good European club to progress further and then they could make there way up the International latter, through the Under 19's to Under 21's and then into the full International set up.
    In the case of John Obi, who has already made his International debut, he is possible the most versatile midfielder to come out of Africa for quite a while. He's strong enough to comfortably play in the holding role in midfield and skillful enough to play in a move advanced position. He is a typical box-to-box midfielder and a very BIG talent.
  5. SpeedyGonzalez

    SpeedyGonzalez New Member

    Jan 19, 2004
    Didier Zokora??????How good is he?
  6. tomaszlegg

    tomaszlegg New Member

    Aug 13, 2005
    Torquay, UK
    Zokora is another talented Ivorian Midfielder, but at 24 can't really be considered a 'young' player anymore. Another two or three seasons and he should be in his prime and on the performances he has shown everyone this season for St. Etienne, he will be quite some player. They are the surprise team this season, currently sitting third in the French League, ahead of the so called bigger French clubs like Monaco, Marseille and Auxerre. I notice you are a Man Utd fan, so taking into consideration the fact Zokora has been linked with a move to United in January or at the end of the season, the question im sure you'd like to know is whether or not he would be a success at Old Trafford? Or be another 'failure’ like Djemba Djemba??
    Well that is something im hoping we will be able to find out in the not to distant future, if he hopefully secures a well deserved move to England.
  7. Dennis Oliech ---is he really 20? I saw him right here in Gaborone when Kenya came to play my beloved Zebras in a WC qualifier and he did NOT look like a twenty-year me he looked more like someone well into his twenties...not even mid twenties..but that was just my observation....

    On another note, your top ten most promising is slanted towards the West African region. Are you by any means suggesting that North Africa,Central and Southern Africa have a paucity of quality youngsters coming thru'the ranks?
  8. tomaszlegg

    tomaszlegg New Member

    Aug 13, 2005
    Torquay, UK
    Firstly, to my knowledge Dennis is 20. The KFF's (Kenyan Football Federation) squad list for the World Cup/African Nations qualifiers and New threads from the Daily Nation, BBC and Sky Sports have all indicated he is 20. I have also seen him recently in Nairobi when I was visiting and I would agree with you that he dose not exactly look 20. To be honest I think he is just a very strong, physically built player, like Wayne Rooney. Who lets be honest does also not look 19!!?
    Saying that, there has always been questions over the rightful age of African players, for example Oba Martins:


    There has also been questions over the 'real' age of Freddy Adu, who was born in Ghana. So although Dennis may not look 20, officially he is.

    Secondly, on the subject of me leaning towards more West African based player, the only reason I have done that is simply because that’s they way world football predominantly looks at African Football. Id hazard a guess that almost 70%-80% of Football funding goes to West African Based development programs. I personally think there is a large number of promising players coming out from all over Africa, but because West African countries have better development programs, I believe they have a greater chance of succeeding in European Football.
    Having been raised in Kenya and still spending most of my time over there, I hate seeing the limited funds that are made available to East African countries.
    Here is a little list of players (Not from West Africa) that have promising futures in the African and European games, please feel free to add:

    1. Marouane Chamakh - Morocco
    2. Tinashe Nengomashe - Zimbabwe
    3. Dane Klate - South Africa
    4. Junior Khanye - South Africa
    5. Lebohang Lefalamang Mokoena - South Africa
    6. Mido - Egypt (although he’s 23 now)

    So the first list was not compiled with any bias towards any region in Africa, but it’s just unfortunate that World football organisations and funding programs tends to do so.
  9. JRedknapp11

    JRedknapp11 Red Card

    Dec 5, 2001
    Name is eluding me now...but that Kenyan bloke who was transfered to Nantes via Saudi , is an exciting player.

    Kenyan football is slowing comming back into the spotlight again. Once the KPF gets a bit more grounded, I really think the rest of the world will see a surplus of quality Kenyan footballers playing across the world.
  10. ZeekLTK

    ZeekLTK Member

    Mar 5, 2004
    Nat'l Team:
    To me, it looks like the list was only based on recent U-17 events, in which mostly Western African teams qualified for. Meaning if a team wasn't in the U-17 World Cup they didn't get mentioned except for that 20 year old Kenyan guy.

    I mean, Ghana, Gambia, and Cote d'Ivoire were Africa's representatives for the U-17 World Cup and then Nigeria is just a continental powerhouse, and if you notice, 9/10 people on the list are from those 4 countries. What about South Africa, Cameroon, Tunisia, Egypt, Congo DR, Morocco? I'd bet they all have at least 1-2 players who are better than some on this list, but they weren't in the WC (or Nigeria) so the original poster simply ignored them.

    And upon further review, the only reason there is a Kenyan guy in the list is because the original poster is from Kenya (or lived there at least), so he had to throw in a home talent. Overall, very shady list, but nice to get a discussion going I guess.
  11. tomaszlegg

    tomaszlegg New Member

    Aug 13, 2005
    Torquay, UK
    Listen Guys, I complied a list together and although I may have left some players out (for example Alex Song, Marouane Chamakh, Biscotte) and other talented youngsters, was so that people could simply discuss the pros and cons of other players who they feel should have been in the list. If you would read the list and descriptions properly then you would also see that I have described how some of the players performed in the recent Under 17 African Championships and Youth World Cup in Holland. So in response to youth 'theory' that I compiled the list based only on the Under 17 World Cup in Peru you would, it seems, be wrong.
    Zeek if you feel there are better players at that age in Egypt, Cameroon, South Africa, Tunisia, Morocco and Congo DR then simply state their names and people can discuss whether they should have been in the original list. Please don't question my integrity and accuse me of being bias towards West African Football, because I simply am not!! If you would also like to read the response I put to jokstein's comments where I put together a little list of players who could have made it into the list. I also mentioned that it’s not me who is bias towards West African Football, its most of the Footballing community outside Africa. What are your views on that?
    So if you guys would like to post the names of players you think should be in the list, then we can have a meaningful discussion about Promising African Footballers.

    P.S. Redknapp, i could not agree more.
  12. SMSM

    SMSM New Member

    Sep 14, 2005
    Isaac Promise ( new okocha)

    Ismael Fofana ( have fantastic left foot..big skills can bu big name in france soon ..he scored very good goal againest italy u17 and scored very good goal with he teamin UCL africa this years ..

    Dennis Oliech can by batter from itoo or drogba soon ..fantastic talent i know him much because i watch him evry weeck in qatar leugue ...

    to me i dont know wher is mbesoma ..he scored 29goals with ex team in sauth africa ..and now he can by very good with portsoth soon when he have a chinc ..

    to me to i dont se CA in list ..he play with nantes u 18 ..last season he play some match with nantes and scored very good goal ..dreble many DF and scored ..

  13. red & wite army

    red & wite army I ain't no drama queen!

    Jan 15, 2005
    Nat'l Team:
    Yes, Mbesuma is very promising.
  14. tomaszlegg

    tomaszlegg New Member

    Aug 13, 2005
    Torquay, UK
    Bocundji Ca is a very promising midfielder. Is more of a box-to-box midfielder than a tenacious defensive midfielder!! He's made two appearances this season for the first team, but im sure will build on that as the season progresses.
    His team mate Gilles Yapi Yapo is a talented player as well. He's made the brake through to the Ivory Coast First team in the last two Internationals and could be one to watch in the coming season and possibly the World Cup.
  15. SMSM

    SMSM New Member

    Sep 14, 2005
    Lucau Chiguy with le man in france ..fantastic talent ..he is only have 21 ..
    he ex PSG player left wenger or second striker ..have big skills and fantastic left foot ..i know he can play next world cup 2010 with he team D congo ..with nonda - lua lua - alunga elc ..
  16. MVFC

    MVFC New Member

    Jul 17, 2005
    Melbourne 5-0
    Mokena (Orlando Pirates - South Africa)

  17. tomaszlegg

    tomaszlegg New Member

    Aug 13, 2005
    Torquay, UK
    Lebohang is a talented attacking midfielder/striker!!
    I have not read many articles about him, but have seen him play in person at the Toulon Tournament in France this summer. He's a very direct player who can play right up front or in his favored supportive role just behind a loan striker (a lot like the position Wayne Rooney tends to play for Man Utd).
    He has very good stats when it come to international level as well, here is his player profile on the Orlando Pirates Website:

    and as you can see by the results of this poll, the fans seem to hold him in high regard as well:

    The only problem that I saw with him, was he is still a very thin player for his age. In the Toulon Tournament, at times he tended to disappear in the match because he simple has no physical presence in the midfield. He's just tuned 19 and now really needs to work on his upper body strength, but im sure the Orlando Pirates coaching staff know that two!!

    Another couple of talented South African players are:

    Junior Khanye
    Dane Klate

    Both Midfielder
  18. afgrijselijkheid

    Dec 29, 2002
    AFC Ajax
    ivorian-born salomon kalou must be at the top of the list

    also, what ive seen of chinedu ogbuke (lyn, nigeria U20) has been very, very impressive
  19. Ogopa-Djz

    Ogopa-Djz New Member

    Jul 21, 2004
    Below the Heavens
    Tottenham Hotspur FC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Same here.... Westie. When i heard Oliech was going o sign to Nantes i was ecstatic. Knowing he's the first Kenyan to get a contract to a well known foota league kinda opens the door for other talented Kenyans to get there.
  20. tomaszlegg

    tomaszlegg New Member

    Aug 13, 2005
    Torquay, UK
    Im not to sure about Solaman Kalou, he's a very promising forward but is currently applying for Dutch citizanship!! So it looks unlikely he will be an African for to long.

    Ogbuke on the other hand is another talented Nigerian attacking Midfielder. Three goals in seven games as a winger for the Nigerian Youth team in the FIFA World Youth Championships is an impressive record.
  21. tomaszlegg

    tomaszlegg New Member

    Aug 13, 2005
    Torquay, UK
    Yaya Toure!! undoubtedly one of the outstanding players in the African Nations earlier this year has to be seen as one of the most promising African Footballer.

    I cannot remember a time when iv seen a midfielder show so many varieties to his game in one match, during Ivory Coast's 1-0 win over Nigeria in the Semi-finals. He was simply outstanding!!

    For all of our sakes, i hope that he is able to secure a move to a 'big' European club in the summer; for example, a move to Man Utd as the long term replacement for Roy Keane!!?
    Now wouldn't that add a bit more spice to Man Utd v Arsenal matches!!

    Yaya v Kolo!!
  22. hanul21

    hanul21 Guest

    doesnt his brother play for German National side? :confused: or is that someone else
  23. tomaszlegg

    tomaszlegg New Member

    Aug 13, 2005
    Torquay, UK
    Your thinking of Gerald Asamoah, he plays for Schalke and the German National Team (He's also born in Ghana). Im sure thats who you are thinking of!!??
    The only other African I can think of playing for the German National Team is Nando Rafael, who's plays for Hertha Berlin and the German Under 21's.
  24. redtyre

    redtyre New Member

    Apr 18, 2004
    It makes me wonder, how good some of these players have to be!

    I'm dissapointed this guy has been released by Real Salt Lake; I've watched him play, scored a hattrick in one game; ; I knew he was going to try to move up past first division soccer.

    Although, Liberia is not Ivory Coast, Cameroon, Nigeria, Ghana (name your home country), it's in that Western African belt that produces strong soccer. Good Luck Melvin! He's probably the best player I've ever seen in person.
  25. SMSM

    SMSM New Member

    Sep 14, 2005
    he 23 old years ..if he u 20 maybe some club in franch or england try contract with him ..

    i hope he like what you say ..because i dont know him before your post ..

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