The Fan Park crew takes a look at some of the most influential African captains of all-time.
Lucas Radebe – South Africa
A Bafana legend if there ever was one, Radebe is still widely regarded as one of the best South African footballers of all-time. He was a member of the Bafana team who won the 1996 African Cup of Nations, and two years later he captained our country in 1998, as well as at the 2002 World Cup. The defender earned himself 70 caps in a Bafana jersey, and also captained Leeds United in the Premier League.
Didier Drogba – Ivory Coast
It was his influence and presence on the field that made him one of the best ever African captains. Drogba made his debut for Ivory Coast in 2002 against Bafana, and was named as captain four years later in 2006. The Ivorian lead his nation for eight years, before retiring from the international stage. In his time he had several memorable moments, including being the first African player to score against Brazil in a World Cup match, and being named the best African player in 2009.
Abedi Pele – Ghana
Now at the age of 50, we can almost regard the attacking midfielder as one of the greatest Africans to ever play the beautiful game. He played 67 times for Ghana, scoring 33 goals, and led his country for seven years from 1991 to 1998.
Rigobert Song – Cameroon
The former Liverpool and West ham centre-back played 137 times for Cameroon and has several honours to show for it. He played in a record eight Africa Cup of Nations tournaments and donned the armband in five of those tournaments - from which he won two (2000 and in 2002). Song also played in four World Cups for his country
Yaya Toure – Ivory Coast
Although he’s been captain of his national team for a short while, we believe that Yaya Toure’s experience on biggest stages will aid him in becoming a successful one. In his first major tournament as captain of Ivory Coast, he led them to the trophy. The 31-year-old has played 95 times for his country, scoring 19 goals from midfield.
Can you name any other influential African captains to have graced our stages? Let us know in the comments section below.