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#1 Samuel Eto'oSamuel Eto’o: The four-time African Footballer of the Year has won a swathe of major honours during a memorable club career that shows no sign of ending, even as the hitman hits 37. He’s a three-time Champions League winner, having won Europe’s biggest club title with Barcelona (twice) and Internazionale. However, in his FIFA World Cup™ experiences Cameroon failed to escape the group stage in his four tournaments, despite being the star in each of them.
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#2 Roger MillaAnother Cameroonian, Roger Milla, is perhaps the African player to be most readily associated with the Fifa World Cup™, Milla remains the tournament’s oldest goalscorer after netting in the 1994 edition at the ripe old age of 42. His greatest heroics, however, came in 1990 when he was influential as Cameroon became the first African side to reach the quarter-finals.
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#3 Jay-Jay OkochaAn Olympic gold-medal winner with Nigeria in 1996, Okocha also won the 1994 Nations Cup and shone at the 2004 edition. He represented the Super Eagles at three Fifa World Cup’s™ and was named in the Team of the Tournament in 1998, after catching the eye with his technique and outrageous footwork. The playmaker was named Nigeria Footballer of the Year on seven occasions, although he never won Caf’s African Footballer of the Year prize.
#4 DID YOU KNOW?Did you know that Egyptian Abdulrahman Fawzi was the first African to score in the FIFA World Cup™ back in 1934? Though, Ghana striker Asamoah Gyan became the leading scorer from an African country in World Cup history after he netted in Ghana’s 2-1 defeat to Portugal in Brazil during the 2014 event. He has six World Cup goals. http://www.readyforfootball.co.za
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#5 Michael EssienMichael Essien can rue a series of missed opportunities during his FIFA World Cup™ career with Ghana. He represented the Black Stars for their first showing at the tournament—in 2006—but was suspended for their Last 16 defeat by Brazil. He missed the 2010 event through injury, denying him the chance to contribute to the West Africans’ memorable run to the quarter-finals, and featured just once at the 2014 edition after making his return to the side. At club level, Essien won Premier Leagues and the Champions League with Chelsea, and also played for Real Madrid.
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#6 Yaya ToureThe Ivory Coast’s Golden Generation consistently flattered to deceive on the grandest stage of all, where despite boasting squads brimming with talent, they’ve never advanced past the group stage of the global showpiece. Yaya Toure is a serial league winner—excelling with both Barcelona and Manchester City—but even he couldn’t make the difference for the Elephants in 2006, 2010 and 2014.