Can Seko Fofana keep his crown?

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Anointed the best African player in Ligue 1 during 2022, the Ivorian midfielder Seko Fofana features a year on in the 11-man shortlist for the 2023 Prix Marc-Vivien Foé. RFI and France 24 will announce the winner on 30 May.

ABDELHAMID Yunis, defender (Morocco/Reims)

Nominated last year, third in 2020, the 35-year-old has shone during the remarkable rise of Will Still’s side which went unbeaten for 19 matches.

BALDÉ Mama, striker (Guinea-Bissau/Troyes)            

Baldé has distinguished himself as one of Troyes’ best performers despite the team’s slide into the Ligue 1 relegation zone.

CAMARA Mohamed, midfielder (Mali/Monaco)

Recruited as the replacement for Aurélien Tchouaméni, who had departed to Real Madrid, 23-year-old Camara has fulfilled his brief with energetic and combative performances for a side aspiring to play in the Champions League.

DIALLO Habib, striker (Senegal/Strasbourg)

Thoughout Strasbourg’s struggles, the 27-year-old has been one of their main sources of goals. His marksmanship as the season culminates could determine their stay in the top flight.

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

Midfield general supreme, Fofana has maintained the form that yielded him the 2022 prize. The 27-year-old has skippered  Lens with no little dash and savviness. Though the title may have slipped away from them, Fofana will be expected to be at the heart of the fight for one of the remaining places from Ligue 1 for next season’s Champions League.

HAKIMI Achraf, defender (Morocco/PSG)

Another season of discreet brilliance from the right back. Solid in defence and the transitions into attack, Hakimi has embellished his legend with performances that have helped PSG continue their domestic dominance.

MBEMBA Chancel, defender (RD Congo/Marseille)

Old school heart on the sleeve defender, the 28-year-old has unsurprisingly become a hero with the fervent faithful in Marseille for his consistency, power and the occasional goal.

MOFFI Terem, striker (Nigeria/Nice)

One of the long term attacking options for Nice, Teremas Igobor Moffi moved from Lorient to the Riviera in January 2023. The 23-year-old has talent to burn.

MUNETSI Marshall, midfielder (Zimbabwe/Reims)

Another of the success stories in Reims’ champagne bottle of a season. Munetsi has flourished under Will Still in his role linking defence and attack..

TRAORÉ Hamari, defender (Mali/Rennes)

Runner-up to Seko Fofana in 2022, the Rennes skipper features in the short list for his defensive rigour and leadership of the rearguard in the Rennes offensive towards European football.

SAMED Salis Abdul, midfielder (Ghana/Lens)

Samed has revelled in his outings as Seko Fofana’s all-action accomplice in midfield. Recruited at the start of the season after two years at Clermont-Ferrand, the 23-year-old played in all three of Ghana’s matches at the 2022 World Cup and  he could – provided Lens maintain their excellence – test his mettle in one of next season’s European competitions.

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