Super Falcons forward, Asisat Oshoala who was named Africa’s Best Female Player for the fourth time at the CAF Awards ceremony in Egypt on Tuesday night almost missed the opportunity of emulating her compatriot, Perpetua Nkwocha but for vote of foreign media practitioners.
A review of the vote pattern of the three Nigerian officials that took part in the process leading to the selection of the 2019 winner of the coveted title showed how they ignored the Super Falcons captain, preferring instead to cast their votes for others.
Asisat Oshoala won the 2019 CAF Women’s Footballer of the Year because people from OTHER countries voted for her. Her own people on the panel didn’t and they are giving excuses. Would anyone from Portugal vote against Ronaldo or Messi in Argentina? This is an eye opener.— Isima (@IsimaOdeh) January 10, 2020
In the first phase of voting conducted amongst technical committee members, the Barcelona star missed five votes as NFF member and head of its Technical Committee, Ahmed Yusuf Fresh, did not vote.
That slip from the NFF official gave Cameroon’s Ajara Nchout, a 14-point gap over Oshoala.
However, foreign media practitioners who value Oshoala’s contribution to both Nigeria and Barcelona Ladies in the year under review, voted in her favour.
Oshoala was ignored by NFF Reform Committee member, Osasu Obayiuwana, former Super Falcons’ Media Officer, Chisom Mbonu Ezeoke and Backroom Staff of Super Eagles Head Coach, Tunde Adelakun.
Obayiuwana voted Oshoala third in his choice of five on the Media Platform. The first choice of the former BBC African Service reporter was Malawian player Tabitha Chawinga, who plys her trade with Jiangsu Suning in the Chinese Women’s Super League.
Congratulations to her, on yet another title. But in my opinion, Tabitha Chawinga is the best woman football in Africa, bar NONE. The only reason she is not winning the AFOTY title is because she’s Malawian. And they don’t play in the @CAF_AWCON.— Osasu Obayiuwana (@osasuo) January 9, 2020
Ezeoke who is a SuperSport anchor, also voted Chawinga first, while Oshoala got her vote for a second place.
Adelakun opted for South Africa’s Thembi Kgatlana as his first choice with Oshoala as second choice.
In the vote cast by legends of the game in the continent, Perpetua Nkwocha, who won the title four times between 2004, 2005, 2010 and 2011 voted Oshoala last, giving her just a point. Nkwocha gave her five points to Ajara Nchout of Cameroon.
But Oshoala came out shinning to her fourth title polling 351 overall. Her earlier titles were in 2014, 2016 and 2017.
Thembi Kgatlana secured 247 votes while Ajara Nchout got 331 votes.