By Akachukwu Amaka
Manchester City’s midfielder Yaya Toure has been named 2013 BBC African Footballer of the Year.
The 30 year-old who had been nominated in each of the past five years but had never won, beat off competition from Chelsea man John Obi Mikel, Liverpool’s forward Victor Moses, Borussia Dortmund striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Rennes winger Jonathan Pitroipa to win the award.
The Ivorian told BBC Sport: ‘I think I’ve been nominated for five years in a row and finally winning the award is amazing. I’m very happy as it is the fans who have given it to me – so I’m very appreciative.’
” It’s a fantastic achievement because I don’t think there has ever been as many quality African players in top level international football as there are now: Aubameyang, Pitroipa, Mikel, Moses, Salomon Kalou, Gervinho… we have fantastic players.
“I also think African football is improving and that means a lot to us. And as an African, I’m very happy.”
Toure has been in excellent form for both club and country this year, chipping in with a total of 13 goals to help City reach the knockout stages of the Champions League and his country confirm their place at next summer’s World Cup.