Africa consistently surprises with its wealth of talent – whether its music, fine art, fashion, technology or football. The mother continent is brimming with creativity and the world is all the more richer for it.
Who hasn’t heard of Fela Kuti, Trevor Noah, Gerard Sekoto, Omou Sy or Diébédo Francis Kéré? These are the men and women who have helped put Africa firmly on the map. If you haven’t played games at a mobile jackpot casino developed by the likes of Uganda’s Kola Studios, you are seriously missing out!
Now there is a group of young African football players with devastating skills, electrifying pace and technical nous. These are the young men who are continuing the tradition of excellence, men who are plying their trade in the English Premier League – a league that’s notoriously difficult in every sense of the word.
Let’s take a look at three Africans who are making waves in England’s top flight, some are comparatively new to the Premiership while others are seasoned players right on top of their game!
Moussa Djenepo – Southampton
Malian winger, Moussa Djenepo is a new recruit for Southampton. He joined the Saints in 2019 from Belgian club Standard Liege where he racked up 11 goals and six assists in 39 appearances.
The 21-year-old may still have a fair bit to learn about the finer points of football but he is a hugely exciting player with great pace and even greater potential. Aside from his speed on the ball Djenepo has incredible technical awareness for such a young and relatively inexperienced player.
Although a natural right footer who loves cutting inside, the tall and rangy Malian is pretty adept with his left foot too and that makes him unpredictable – something coach Ralph Hasenhuttl would have been looking for.
What is so impressive about the young man is he is already a complete player. His offensive style of play is exhilarating – especially those penetrative runs from the inside of the field – and he works well within the defensive structures of the team.
One of Moussa Djenepo’s standout strengths is his dribbling which together with his creativity and imagination makes him a potentially great counter attacker. Will the young Malian make an impact for Southampton this season? You can bet on it!
Alex Iwobi – Everton
Nigerian Alex Iwobi came into his own under Unai Emery at the Gunners. The young attacking midfielder finished in the league’s top 20 players when it came to creating chances. He also racked up eight assists in all competitions during Emery’s first season in charge.
The 23-year-old is no stranger to titles as he bagged one FA Cup and two Community Shields during his four-year stint with Arsenal. In August this year, Iwobi signed a five-year contract with Everton.
Although Iwobi has been used sparingly and scored only one goal in three appearances, he has a range of talents that should catapult him into the starting 11 any day soon.
The young man is pacey, creative and smart and his cross accuracy is right up there with the best. What makes the Lagos-born Brit such a formidable opponent is his quick decision-making and the capacity to find the best option in front of the box.
Alex Iwobi has the makings of a future star. He is strong, physically imposing and has awesome defensive skills. Provided he can keep his composure in front of the goal, he is a great prospect for the Toffees this season and hopefully for many more to come!
Sadio Mane – Liverpool
Sadio Mane needs no introduction. He’s won the Austrian Bundesliga and Austrian Cup with Red Bull Salzburg and the UEFA Champions League and Super Cup with his current club Liverpool.
He scored a blinder in the 2018 Champions League final, cementing the title win for the Reds. He also ended the season as the joint top goal scorers in the league, bagging the Premier League Golden boot for his efforts.
The 27-year-old winger from Senegal is playing the best football of his life. Right now, Sadio Mane is widely regarded as one of the best football players in the world – and certainly the best winger in Europe.
What makes Mane such a lethal prospect for his opponents is his outstanding goal conversion rate and incomparable use of space. Mane is a giant of African football and one of the nicest guys too.
He is more than willing to set up star team mates like Roberto Firmino and Mohammed Salah and he is just as willing to cut back and retain the ball for future attempts at goal.
Mane is a man who clearly loves playing football. He has outstanding technical knowledge, jaw dropping dribbling skills and his positioning is always out of the top draw.
The wonderfully talented Senegalese has all the tools in the tool box to make scoring gaols look easy – and by the looks of his tally… it sure is!
Can Sadio Mane help power Liverpool to a 19th league title? When he’s on song he’s one of the most important cogs in the wheel.
Right now, Liverpool is topping the Premier League table. They’ve bagged five back to back wins and are five points clear of the nearest rivals, Manchester City. Although its early days, Liverpool are looking extremely good – and Sadio Mane is playing a key part in all that!
Who is your pick for the best soccer player from Africa in the English Premier League in the 2019-20 season? Is it Sadio Mane, Alex Iwobi, Moussa Djenepo or one of the other great footballers from the African continent?