29 November 2012

South Africa: Portia Modise Up for Top Football Award

Banyana Banyana midfielder Portia Modise is one of the three nominees for the African Footballer of the Year. The winner will be announced at the Confederation of African Football's (Caf) Glo-Caf Awards in Accra, Ghana, on 20 December.

Modise, who has scored 73 goals in her 102 appearances for the Sasol-sponsored Banyana Banyana, played a key role in the team's run to the final of the Caf African Women Championship 2012, which was held in Equatorial Guinea last month.

"I am delighted that my performances have been recognised in what has been one of Banyana Banyana's busiest and most successful years in the national team's history, and must thank Safa, Sasol, my team-mates and all persons who have supported and encouraged me," Modise said in a statement.

The Palace Super Falcons player will be up against 15-year-old Nigerian goal-scoring sensation Chinwendu Ihezuo, who scored six goals during the Fifa under-17 Women's World Cup this year, and Equatorial Guinea playmaker Genoveva Anoman, who scored six goals to help her country clinch the Caf African Women Championship title.

Africa Cup of Nations champions Zambia are in the running in the National Team of the Year category along with Cape Verde, which achieved its highest ever Caf and Fifa rankings of 10 and 51 respectively in 2012.

The Central African Republic (CAR) has also been nominated after just missing out on the 2013 Afcon finals with a loss to Burkina Faso on a late goal. They had previously knocked out seven-time African champions Egypt in the qualifiers. The CAR team also won their first ever Fifa World Cup qualifier in June when they beat Botswana 2-0.

As Africa's top ranked team and the Africa Cup of Nations' runners-up, Cote dÂ’ Ivoire is also in the running.

Women's National Team of the Year

The Women's National Team of the Year award will be decided between Caf African Women Championship winners Equatorial Guinea and the Ghana under-17 side, which won the bronze medal at the FifaU-17 Women's World Cup, knocking out tournament favourites Japan en route to the semi-finals.

The Coach of the Year finalists are Herve Renard, who led Zambia to the 2012 Africa Cup of Nations title, Al-Ahly coach Hossam El Bady, who led the club to a record seventh Caf Champions League title, Esperance boss Nabil Maaloul, who guided the team to the Caf Champions League final, and AC Leopards, Tunisia coach Nasreddine Nabi, whose team won the Caf Confederation Cup trophy for a first time.

The club of the Year category is also expected to be closely contested with Egyptian giants Al Ahly, Esperance (Tunisia), AC Leopards (Congo) and Mali's Djoliba (Caf Confederation Cup finalists) nominated.

The Most Promising Talent section of the awards will be a battle between Egyptian under-23 star Mohamed Salah, who scored in three of his team's four matches at the London Olympics, Senegalese striker Moussa Monate, who scored in all four of his country's matches at the London Olympics, and Kenyan midfielder Victor Wanyama, who scored a sensational goal to help Celtic beat Spanish Giants Barcelona in the UEFA Champions League.

SAinfo reporter

Portia Modise celebrates scoring a wonder goal from 45 metres out against Sweden in Banyana Banyana's opening match at the 2012 London Olympic Games (Photo: South African Football Association)

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