Chelsea wing back Victor Moses has spoken of his delight at being nominated for the 2017 BBC African Footballer of the Year award.
Moses, a key contributor to Nigeria’s successful World Cup qualifying campaign was named among four other nominees for the BBC gong on Saturday at a ceremony in London.
The nomination comes as recognition of Moses’ stellar performances this year, not only with Nigeria but also at his club Chelsea where he was an important part of The Blues’ Premier League success in May.
“I am very proud and delighted (to be nominated),” began Moses to Chelsea’s official website.
“It’s been a great year for me so far. We won the league, we got to the FA Cup final. I really enjoyed the season last year and I’m very happy with how it went. I want to continue in that way,” he added.
Since joining Chelsea in the summer of 2012, Moses has been playing as a winger – his natural position – but has always found regular playing time hard to come by until in October 2016 when current Blues boss Antonio Conte started playing him as a wing-back.
“It does make me quite proud (that I get nominated when I changed position),” said Moses. When I first started playing in that position not everyone knew I had the ability to play there, but the manager talked to me, advised me and encouraged me to do the best I can in that position. I took it in my stride.”
“I had to change my natural game a lot! I am used to it now, but I had to adapt defensively and offensively. I knew I was good going forward but I really worked hard on the defensive side of things, because when you play in a position like that you have to be aware defensively,” added the former Wigan star who scored three goals in four qualifying games for Nigeria.
Moses will be up against Liverpool duo Sadio Mane and Mohammed Salah as well as Naby Keita and Borussia Dortmund’s Pierre Emerick Aubameyang. Voting has already commenced and will close on November 27. (https://www.aclsports.com/6808-2/)
The former England Under-17 star also admits it will be a dream come true to win the award.
“It would be great to win an award and be the best in Africa. It would mean a lot to me. It is something I would keep for the rest of my life, and it would be like a dream come true,” he concluded.