Nigerian Stars Victor Osimhen and Asisat Oshoala shine with Nominations for the 2023 Ballon d’Or

Victor Osimhen and Asisat Oshoala Shine as 2023 Ballon d’Or Nominees

In the world of football, few honors are as prestigious as the Ballon d’Or, and this year, two Nigerian stars have made their country proud by securing nominations for the coveted award. Victor Osimhen, the Napoli striker, and Asisat Oshoala, the Barcelona Femeni forward, have both earned their places among the elite nominees for the 2023 Ballon d’Or.

Victor Osimhen’s nomination is a testament to his exceptional performance last season. He was in impeccable form, playing a pivotal role in Napoli’s historic triumph as they clinched their first Scudetto in 33 years. Osimhen’s remarkable achievement saw him score 25 league goals, outperforming notable contenders like Lautaro Martinez of Inter Milan and AC Milan’s Rafael Leao. His incredible prowess on the field earned him the title of the Best Striker in Serie A. Furthermore, Osimhen’s contributions extended beyond club football, as he played a crucial role in securing a spot for the Super Eagles in the upcoming 2023 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON). This impressive feat also earned him the distinction of becoming the first African to top the Serie A scorers’ chart, surpassing the legendary George Weah’s record for the most goals scored by an African in the Italian league.

Here is the list of nominees for the 2023 Men’s Ballon d’Or:

1. Josko Gvardiol (Manchester City)
2. Andre Onana (Manchester United)
3. Karim Benzema (Al Ittihad)
4. Jamal Musiala (Bayern Munich)
5. Mohamed Salah (Liverpool)
6. Jude Bellingham (Real Madrid)
7. Bukayo Saka (Arsenal)
8. Randal Kolo Muani (Paris Saint Germain)
9. Kevin de Bruyne (Manchester City)
10. Bernardo Silva (Manchester City)
11. Khvicha Kvaratskhelia (Napoli)
12. Emiliano Martinez (Aston Villa)
13. Ruben Dias (Manchester City)
14. Nicola Barella (Inter Milan)
15. Erling Haaland (Manchester City)
16. Yassine Bounou (Al Hilal)
17. Martin Odegaard (Arsenal)
18. Julian Alvarez (Manchester City)
19. Ilkay Gundogan (Barcelona)
20. Vinicius Jr (Real Madrid)
21. Robert Lewandowski (Barcelona)
22. Antoine Griezmann (Atletico Madrid)
23. Lautaro Martinez (Inter MIlan)
24. Lionel Messi (Inter Miami)
25. Rodri (Barcelona)
26. Kylian Mbappe (Paris Saint German)
27. Kim Min-Jae (Bayern Munich)
28. Victor Osimhen (Napoli)
29. Luka Modric (Real Madrid)
30. Harry Kane (Bayern Munich)

As for Asisat Oshoala, her nomination for the Ballon d’Or marks a historic achievement in her career. She had already made history as the first African to be nominated for the award last year, and this year, she continues to raise the bar. Oshoala, representing Barcelona Femeni, achieved a remarkable treble by securing the Primera Division title, the Supercopa de Espana Femenina, and the coveted UEFA Champions League. Her impressive domestic league performance saw her emerge as the joint-top scorer in Spain with 21 goals. Oshoala’s success extended to the international stage, where she played a vital role for the Super Falcons in the Women’s World Cup, reaching the round of 16.

Here is the list of nominees for the 2023 Women’s Ballon d’Or:

1. Khadija Shaw (Manchester City)
2. Mapi Leon (Barcelona)
3. Mary Earps (Manchester United)
4. Asisat Oshoala (Barcelona)
5. Wendie Renard (Lyon)
6. Katie McCabe (Arsenal)
7. Jill Roord (Wolfsburg and Manchester City)
8. Yui Hasegawa (Manchester City)
9. Alexandra Popp (Wolfsburg)
10. Aitana Bonmati (Barcelona)
11. Debinha (Kansas City)
12. Sam Kerr (Chelsea)
13. Reiten (Chelsea)
14. Ewa Pajor (Wolfsburg)
15. Patricia Guijarro (Barcelona)
16. Daphne Van Domselaar (Twente and Aston Villa)
17. Lena Oberdorf (Wolfsburg)
18. Hinata Miyazawa (MyNavi Sendai and Manchester United)
19. Millie Bright (Chelsea)
20. Salma Paralluelo (Barcelona)
21. Sophia Smith (Portland Thorns)
22. Hayley Raso (Manchester City and Real Madrid)
23. Amanda Ilestedt (PSG and Arsenal)
24. Georgia Stanway (Bayern Munich)
25. Olga Ramona (Real Madrid)
26. Fridolina Rolfo (Barcelona)
27. Rachel Daly (Aston Villa)
28. Alba Redondo (Levante)
29. Linda Caicedo (Real Madrid)
30. Kadidiatou Diani (Lyon)

Nigerians worldwide are proud of these exceptional athletes for their remarkable achievements and for representing their country on the global stage. As the anticipation builds for the 2023 Ballon d’Or awards ceremony, the world will be watching closely to see if Victor Osimhen and Asisat Oshoala can bring home the prestigious titles and make history once again.

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