Just a few days after he was nominated for the 2023 Ballon d’Or award, Nigerian striker Victor Osimhen was on Thursday listed for the FIFA Best Player award.
Argentine superstar, Lionel Messi; Erling Haaland; Kevin De Bruyne, and Kylian Mbappe were also nominated alongside the Super Eagles forward in the men’s category of the award.
Other nominees include Julian Alvarez, Marcelo Brozovic, İlkay Gundogan, Rodri, Khvicha Kvaratskhelia, Declan Rice, and Bernardo Silva.
Osimhen’s nomination makes him the first Nigerian player to be listed for the FIFA Best Footballer Award which was first won by Cristiano Ronaldo in 2016.
Osimhen was in monstrous form for Napoli last season, helping the Italian Serie A side win their first Scudetto in 33 years.
The forward scored 25 league goals to beat off Lautaro Martinez of Inter Milan and AC Milan’s Rafael Leao to scoop the prize for the Best Striker in Serie A.
The feat earned the 24-year-old the accolade as the first African to top the Serie A scorers’ chart, equally breaking George Weah’s record for the most goals scored by an African in the Italian league.
He also helped Napoli reach the quarter-final of the UEFA Champions League and was instrumental as the Super Eagles sealed a ticket for the delayed 2023 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON).
Osimhen’s compatriot, Asisat Oshoala, who also bagged Ballon d’Or nomination in the female category however failed to make the cut in the FIFA Best Award.
The nominees for Women’s Best Player are Aitana Bonmati (ESP), Linda Caicedo (COL), Rachel Daly (ENG), Kadidiatou Diani (FRA), Caitlin Foord (AUS), Mary Fowler (AUS), Alex Greenwood (ENG), Jenni Hermoso (ESP), Lindsey Horan (USA), Amanda Ilestedt (SWE), Lauren James (ENG), Sam Kerr (AUS), Mapi Leon (ESP), Hinata Miyazawa (JPN), Salma Paralluelo (ESP), Keira Walsh (ENG).
Men’s best coach nominees are Pep Guardiola (ESP), Simone Inzaghi (ITA), Ange Postecoglou (AUS), Luciano Spalletti (ITA), and Xavi (ESP).
Women’s best coach nominees are Peter Gerhardsson (SWE), Jonatan Giraldez (ESP), Tony Gustavsson (SWE), Emma Hayes (ENG), and Sarina Wiegman (NED).