Lille star Nicolas Pepe wins 2019 Marc-Vivien Foe prize

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Following his fine displays for the Great Danes, the Ivory Coast international has been named the best African player in the French top-flight

Lille forward Nicolas Pepe has been announced as the winner of the 2019 Marc-Vivien Foe prize.

The 23-year-old saw off competition from Saint-Etienne’s Wahbi Khazri and Rennes winger Ismaila Sarr who finished second and third respectively.

Pepe amassed 379 points from the total votes to succeed Cameroon's Karl Toko Ekambi who won the accolade last year.

He is the third Ivorian player to win the award, in honour of former Cameroon international Marc-Vivien Foe who passed away during the 2003 Fifa Confederations Cup. The other Ivorian winners were Gervinho and Jean Michael Seri.

Pepe has helped Lille qualify for next season’s Uefa Champions League with 22 goals and 11 assists in 37 league outings.

His future at the club remains uncertain with coach Christophe Galtier and club president Gerard Lopez confirming his imminent departure.

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Next month, Pepe will hope to replicate his fine form for Ivory Coast at the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations.

The Elephants have been drawn against South Africa, Morocco and Namibia in Group D.

 

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