Terem Moffi nominated for French football award

Terem Moffi nominated for French football award

OGC Nice and Super Eagles striker Terem Moffi has been nominated for the Marc-Vivien Foe award that honours the best African player in the French Ligue 1.

The award came to be called its current name after one of the biggest African exports to the French top flight, Cameroon midfielder Marc-Vivien Foe, died while playing for his country in 2003 at the age of 28. Before that, it was a way for the French top flight to honour African players who were the second most represented nationality in French football after the French themselves.

A few Nigerians have plied their trade in Ligue 1 including Nantes forward Moses Simon, Austin “Jay Jay” Okocha, Victor Osimhen, Victor Ikpeba (the prince of Monaco) and Vincent Enyeama, who was recently named Africa's best goalkeeper. Only Enyeama and Osimhen have won the award, however.

Moffi could be the third Nigerian to win it if he beats out an incredible nominees' list of 10.

His competition for the prestigious award are Achraf Hakimi (Paris Saint-Germain and Morocco), Yunis Abdelhamid (Stade de Reims and Morocco), Mama Baldé (Troyes and Guinea-Bissau), Mohamed Camara (AS Monaco and Mali), Habib Diallo (Strasbourg and Senegal), last year's winner Seko Fofana (RC Lens and Ivory Coast), Chancel Mbemba (Olympique de Marseille and DR Congo), Marshall Munetsi (Stade de Reims and Zimbabwe), Salis Abdul Samed (RC Lens and Ghana), and Hamari Traoré (Stade Rennais and Mali).

The award will be announced on May 30 following deliberations by a panel of 100 former Ligue 1 players of African descent and journalists who specialise in French and African football.

Moffi's claim to the award is 16 goals and three assists for Nice in the league this season. He has 19 goals in all competitions for Les Aiglons, three of which have come in the UEFA European Conference League.

His second and third goals in that competition came in Nice's visit to Swiss club FC Basel for the first leg of their quarter final clash. He scored in the 38th minute to equalise, before scoring a brilliant overhead kick on the stroke of halftime that was almost the match winner until Basel equalised in the 71st minute.

The goal was named the European Conference League goal of that week. Moffi claimed that Manchester City's Norwegian striker Erling Haaland inspired the goal. “It was a special goal, a special moment. I would never have imagined scoring such a goal. Honestly, I had no idea what I was doing. I saw the ball coming, and I tried. The goal of the year? Maybe not. But maybe the goal of the competition.” he said after the match.

Then he added: “To be honest, it’s not something you can prepare for. I saw Haaland do it last weekend (against Southampton), and I was like, ‘Why not?’”

For the award, Moffi will be closely challenged by Hakimi, whose exploits at the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar with Morocco and with PSG in the league speak strongly for him.

This article was most recently revised and updated 10 months ago

All-round lover of the beautiful game. Massive football fan, supported Arsenal for decades for reasons that are unexplainable. One day we will win the Champions League!