Yaya Toure has been named as African Player of the Year
Manchester City and Ivory Coast midfielder helped club win EPL last season
Ivory Coast striker Didier Drogba misses out despite winning European Champions League
Cameroon and Barcelona's Alex Song also overlooked
Yaya Toure has retained his title as African Player of the Year after fighting off the challenge of Didier Drogba.
The 29-year-old, who helped guide Manchester City to the English Premier League title last season, enjoyed a stunning year with the club.
The Ivorian, who overcame fellow countryman Drogba and Cameroon’s Alex Song, was obviously touched after being confirmed as the winner.
“I have a lot of emotion,” he said after getting onto the stage in Accra, Ghana. “I think this night is so special for me.”
Toure scored six goals last season as City pipped rivals Manchester United to the title, while he also helped his country reach the final of the Africa Cup of Nations.
The 29-year-old has now equaled the achievements of Senegal’s El-Hadji Diouf by winning the award twice in a row.
But he will face a challenge to make it three on the bounce as Cameroon’s Samuel Eto’o did between 2003-2005, before the Cameroon striker collected the award for a fourth time in 2010.
Former Chelsea star Drogba had been highly-fancied to win the award after his stellar year at Stamford Bridge.
The 34-year-old, now playing in China with Shanghai Shenhua, was an integral part of the team’s European Champions League triumph as well as its FA Cup success.
His equalizer in the Champions League final against Bayern Munich and his winning penalty kick led the club to its first every triumph in the competition.
But it was Toure, who helped City win its first league title in 44 years, who won the vote, with Song of Barcelona coming third.
“Being in competition against Yaya and Alex was very difficult for me,” Drogba told reporters. “I don’t mind if Yaya wins. I’m very proud.”
Meanwhile, Zambia was named as the National Team of the Year following its incredible victory at the Africa Cup of Nations.
Manager Herve Renard took the Coach of the Year accolade after leading Zambia to the title following his side’s triumph over the Ivory Coast on penalties.
Egypt and Al Ahly midfielder Mohamed Aboutreika was named as African Player of the Year Based in Africa.
The 34-year-old collected the prize for the second time having also won it back in 2008.