Borussia Dortmund’s Gabonese striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Leicester City’s Algeria forward Riyad Mahrez and Liverpool’s Senegalese attacker Sadio Mane completed the final shortlist for the 2016 Glo-CAF African Player of the Year award, which was announced on Thursday.
This is after Roma’s Egyptian defender Mohamed Salah and Leicester City’s Algeria striker Islam Slimani, who made the five-man CAF shortlist last month, were dropped from the final shortlist.
Current African Footballer of the Year Aubameyang is favorite to win the award after winning it in 2015 and having a successful run with Borussia Dortmund in the German league.
The 27-year-old, who will lead the Panthers’ challenge for the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations on home soil next month, has 16 goals to his name to sit atop the Bundesliga’s goalscoring charts.
BBC African Footballer of the Year 2016 award winner Mahrez has a chance to dethrone Aubameyang after guiding Leicester to the Premier League title this year.
While Mane has been sensational since arriving at Anfield from Southampton this summer for around £30m.
The players shortlisted for African Player of the Year (Based in Africa) are T.P Mazembe’s Zambia captain Rainford Kabala as well as Mamelodi Sundowns’ Uganda’s Dennis Onyango and Zimbabwe’s Khama Billiat.
CAF said the list was prepared through a vigorous selection process by the Technical, Football and Media Committees of the body, taking into account the performances of the players for their national teams and clubs from January to November of each year.
The African Footballer of the Year is chosen by a poll of national team coaches and, for the first time, a panel of media experts.
It is scheduled to hold in Abuja on January 5.