The Belgian tactician has revealed reasons why the Nigerian lost the African Player of the Year crown to Ivoirian Yaya Toure
Burkina Faso head coach Paul Put has stated reasons why Nigeria midfielder John Obi Mikel failed to win the African Player of the Year at the GLO/CAF Awards held on Thursday.
Put whose team lost to the Super Eagles in the final of the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations told Goal that the Nigerian should have himself to blame for not being consistent at his club side Chelsea.
“The three nominees [Mikel, Yaya & Drogba] were superb in 2013 but to be honest with you, Yaya was the best because he was outstanding for both club and country,” Put told Goal.
“I could have rooted for Mikel to win but not at the expense of Yaya who added goal scoring responsibilities to his dominance in the midfield of his country and club and put up man of the match performances too.
“Mikel does not get to play regularly for his club and I think that was a big minus for him. He has to work hard if he is to be crowned the next African Footballer of the Year.”
The Belgian however stated his disappointment for not being named as best coach in Africa and concluded that his side will come out stronger in 2014.
“I'm very disappointed because when you are nominated on two fronts – with the team and as coach one would have expected to win one prize.
“I had expected the Burkina Faso team to win the team of the year because we took the continent by surprise. I am strong in victory.
“We have to take a cue from Nigeria because they are on top right now so we are doing everything possible to ensure we follow their footsteps. That is how we can move forward,” Put said.