This article presents the ten greatest African-born players to have played in the English Premier League. With so many of the continent’s stars having graced the nation’s top flight, I was spoilt for choice and could easily have filled this list twice over.
I have looked to present the players who have made the biggest impact at the top level of the game, those who achieved the highest level of performance and who left an indelible mark on the world of football.
I have focused on those who achieved the most in the game, who demonstrated the highest levels of technical prowess and who managed to excel over a relatively long duration.
I have not focused purely on those players who made an impact within the Premier League, rather, I present the finest players born in Africa, who at one time or another featured in England’s top flight.
Two caveats I should make clear initially: I have considered players born on the African continent—not those who were born in Europe, of African parents, playing for African national teams—such as Benoit Assou-Ekotto and Kevin-Prince Boateng. This means however, that some players born in Africa but who played for European national sides, have been considered for inclusion.
Secondly, I have limited my quest to those players who graced the English top flight since the top division was re-branded as the Premier League, in February 1992. Thus, players such as Leeds United’s South African winger Albert Johanneson have not been considered.