As the AFCON 2023 tournament in Ivory Coast clocks closer, let us critically have a look at the most valuable squads heading into the 34th edition of Africa's most prestigious competition.
Out of the 24 nations that will take part in the tournament, only one of them will be left standing on the podium come 11th February, 2024 with the trophy.
Going into the event, Morocco, Senegal, Tunisia, Algeria, Egypt, and Nigeria stay as the top six teams out of Africa according to the last FIFA World Rankings of men's national football teams.
However, the tables turn when it comes to value placed on these African senior national sides which comes from the array of prized stars within their squad.
Interestingly, out of the top six most ranked African teams globally, only Nigeria, Morocco, and Senegal are in the top five most valuable teams heading into AFCON 2023.
The Nigerian, Moroccan, and Senegalese teams boast of some of Africa’s biggest stars at the moment, this earned them a place in the top five most valuable squads and also amongst the top six most ranked teams in Africa.
Players like reigning African Footballer of the Year, Victor Osimhen; Achraf Hakimi, Victor Boniface, Samuel Chukwueze, Sadio Mane, Pape Matar Sarr, Kelechi Iheanacho, Kalidou Koulibaly and Yassine Bounou are some of the prized stars playing for these three African nations.
Most valuable squads at AFCON 2023
With the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations set to take place in January, Goalballlive.com brings you the very top 5 squads with their respective values as compiled from data taken from TransferMarkt website.
Nigeria (Super Eagles)
Nigeria boasts of one of the richest squads heading to the continent’s biggest football competition.
As a matter of fact, the Super Eagles lead the chart as the most valuable one going into the AFCON.
Set to kick-off their campaign on 14th January, Nigeria are seeded alongside the tournament’s hosts Ivory Coast, Guinea-Bissau, and Equatorial Guinea in group A.
The Nigeria squad has a valuation of €450.50 million with Osimhen, Boniface, and Ademola Lookman as current stand-out most valuable assets in the team.
Morocco (Atlas Lions)
Nicknamed ‘The Atlas Lions', the 2022 FIFA World Cup semi-finalists are in second place on the standings with an impressive valuation of €347.80 million.
The most notable players which contributed to the team's value include PSG right-back Achraf Hakimi, Sofyan Amrabat, and African Goalkeeper of the Year Yassine Bounou who now plies his trade in the Saudi Pro League for Al Hilal.
Ivory Coast (The Elephants)
Ivory Coast comes in third place on the chart with a valuation of €329.98 million. As AFCON 2023 hosts, the country will look to oversee a memory competition.
The most valuable players in the Elephants' squad include Trapzonspor's Nicolas Pepe, Borussia Dortmund's Sebastien Haller, Bayer Leverkusen’s Odilon Kossounou and Sporting CP’s Ousmane Diomande, and a host of other players.
Ghana (The Black Stars)
Placed in Group B with Egypt, Cape Verde, and Mozambique, the Black Stars of Ghana take the fourth position on the list with a valuation of €284.85 million.
Ghana's Golden Boy Mohammed Kudus who plays for West Ham, Inaki Williams who plays for Athletic Bilbao are seen as two of the team’s most valuable players.
The team will be eager to add to their four AFCON trophy haul after many years of near-success stories.
Senegal (Teranga Lions)
The defending champions of the AFCON who triumphed in the 33rd edition in Cameroon, take the fifth spot among the most valuable teams set for the upcoming AFCON event.
The Teranga Lions of Senegal have a squad value of €263.90 million and are captained by Al Nassr forward Sadio Mane.
Aside from Mane, the other prized players in the team are Kalidou Koulibaly, Eduouard Mendy, Boulaye Dia and Pape Matar Sarr, to mention but a few.
Surprisingly though, despite its array of stars, Sengal falls behind Nigeria and Morocco in terms of team valuation.
Favourites to top group C, Senegal will battle Gambia, Guinea, and Cameroon as they seek to defend their title.
This article was most recently revised and updated 2 months ago