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Egypt glows at Glo CAF Awards

By Kofi Owusu Aduonum - Ghanaian Chronicle

The 2008 Glo CAF Awards ceremony recently held in Lagos will go down in the history of Egyptian football as a memorable one, having swept five awards on the evening, at an event that attracted the World's august sporting personalities.

And for a moment, it was a great pride and honour to be associated with the North African country that has witnessed a six time Nations Cup winning record.

Al-Ahly's ace player, Mohammed Aboutreika emerged the winner of the inter-club player of the year, with Coach of the year award also going to Egypt's national team coach, Hassan Shehata.

As if that was not enough, the current Super Cup winners, AL-Ahly won the best club of the year, with the Pharaohs (Egyptian National team) winning the best national team of the year.

Aboutreika's exploits attracted wide attention from the organizers in the selection of Africa's best eleven, and consequently rewarded him as one of the continent's finest.

It was Arsenal and Togo's key performer, Emmanuel Adebayor who emerged the ultimate winner after being nominated alongside Ghana's Michael Essien and Aboutreika.

The proud winner, accompanied by his mother, Akanho Adebayor and junior brother, Anthony Adebayor, also a footballer, and resplendently dressed in African wear (agbada) and with braided hair, urged that the continent unites in her quest to host a successful World Cup.

He dedicated the coveted award to his late father, Mr. Adebayor, and all who have contributed in diverse ways to his success as a player.

Aboutreika left the Expo Centre of Eko Hotel & Suitesin Victoria Island, Lagos, venue for the event, not amused and cited 'unfairness' on the part of the organizers.

For the North African midfielder and some pundits, his outstanding performance in 2008 should have won him the ultimate.

That notwithstanding, it was a well-organized event by all standards, drawing all who matter in football from across the globe.

It was an event that was spiced by high profile musical performances from some of the continent's best artists like Yvonne Chaka Chaka, Yusuf N'duor, P-Square and other fine performers.

The awardees went home with pure crystal-made trophies imported from the United Arab Emirates.

The chairman of telecommunication giants, Globacom, Dr Mike Adenuga Jnr. thanked FIFA's President Sepp Blatter, and CAF President Issah Hayatou's efforts for the hosting of the 2010 World Cup on African soil for the first time.

He challenged that all hands should be put on deck as Africa hosts the world, saying “It is our duty to make sure the forthcoming World Cup to be hosted in South Africa is a huge success.”

Dr. Adenuga Jnr. added that Africa has contributed immensely to the development of soccer in Africa and the World at large, and deserves commendation.

He pointed out that if the telecommunication industry were to be a World Cup competition, Globacom will give every country its run for their monies.

Other winners of the competition were Solomon Kalou of Cote d'Ivoire, Best Young Player Award, Cote d'Ivoire won the Fair Play Award, Best Female player went to South Africa's Alice Matlou, Legendary Award to Christian Chukwu of Nigeria.

Ghana's trio of Essien, John Mensah and Sulley Muntari were mentioned in Africa's Best Eleven squad.

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