Ekong, Aina Make AFCON 2023 Official Team of the Tournament, Osimhen and Nwabali Overlooked

Ekong, Aina Make AFCON 2023 Official Team of the Tournament, Osimhen and Nwabali Overlooked

Elijah Odetokun
February 14, 2024 at 12:02 PM
In this article:
Ronwen Williams logo
R. Williams
Mamelodi Sundowns logoGSouth Africa logo
Ola Aina logo
O. Aina
Nottingham Forest logoDNigeria logo
William Troost-Ekong logo
W. Troost-Ekong
PAOK Saloniki logoDNigeria logo
Chancel Mbemba logo
C. Mbemba
Marseille logoDDemocratic Republic of the Congo logo
Ghislain Konan logo
G. Konan
Al-Fayha logoDIvory Coast logo
Franck Kessié logo
F. Kessié
Al-Ahli SFC logoMIvory Coast logo
Jean-Michaël Seri logo
J. Seri
Hull City logoMIvory Coast logo
Teboho Mokoena logo
T. Mokoena
Mamelodi Sundowns logoMSouth Africa logo
Yoane Wissa logo
Y. Wissa
Brentford logoMDemocratic Republic of the Congo logo
Ademola Lookman logo
A. Lookman
Atalanta logoFNigeria logo
Emilio Nsue logo
CF Intercity logoD-
CAF Africa Cup of Nations logo
  • The AFCON 2023 official team of the tournament is out
  • Three Super Eagles and Ivorians players made the best 11
  • There is no place for Stanley Nwabali and Victor Osimhen

The Confederation of African Football has released the best 11 for the just concluded Africa Cup of Nations 2023, with some notable omissions.

Host Ivory Coast beat the Super Eagles of Nigeria 2-1 in the final at the Alassane Ouattara Stadium in Abidjan to win their third title at the expense of their opponent, who were seeking a fourth title.

Franck Kessie, Frank Onyeka, Nigeria, Ivory Coast, AFCON 2023 final.
Franck Kessie celebrates after scoring Ivory Coast's first goal in the 2-1 AFCON final win over Nigeria. Photo by Visionhaus.
Source: Getty Images

Per a post on social media, CAF Online confirmed the best 11 featuring three Nigerians and Ivorians, coached by Emerson Far.

GK - Ronwen Williams

The South African goalkeeper, who won the goalkeeper of the tournament, got the nod ahead of Stanley Nwabali yet again. The Bafana Bafana captain’s heroics in the shootout against Cape Verde and recording five clean sheets stood him out over the Chippa United goalie.

Defence - Aina, Ekong, Mbemba, Konan

Two Nigerian players featured in the four-man backline – MVP and captain William Troost-Ekong and Ola Aina, despite the Nottingham Forest defender dropping his worst performance of the tournament in the final loss to Ivory Coast.

DR Congo’s Chancel Mbemba and winning left-back Ghislain Konan complete the defence line.

Midfield - Mokoena, Seri, Kessie

South Africa’s Teboho Mokoena joins Ivorian duo Jean Michael Seri and Franck Kessie in a three-man midfield. The Mamelodi Sundowns star missed two spot-kicks during shootouts against Nigeria and DR Congo. Former Barcelona star Kessie scored in the final, while his compatriot was ever-present for the Elephants.

Attack - Wissa, Nsue, Lookman

Brentford star Yoane Wissa and Atalanta forward Ademola Lookman joined top scorer Emilio Nsue in attack. Nsue, who plays right-back at his club, scored five goals in four games. Lookman scored three, while Wissa contributed two goals to Leopard’s fourth-place journey.

Reigning African footballer of the year Victor Osimhen was overlooked. The Napoli forward scored once, drew two penalties and had three goals disallowed. Sebastian Haller, who scored the winning goal in the final, also missed out.

Super Eagles stars born in Europe

Sports Brief reported on six Super Eagles stars born in Europe, constituting a part of the one-third of the 629 players at AFCON 2023 born outside the continent.

Of the six Nigerian stars at the AFCON born outside the country, five have links to London and are famously referred to as the Innit Boys, while captain Ekong was born in the Netherlands.

Elijah Odetokun photo
Elijah Odetokun
Elijah Odetokun is Reuters-trained journalist with three years of experience having previously worked at Daily Times Nigeria, OmaSports and El Futbolero.