Former Nigeria international Austin Okocha, Argentina legend Diego Maradona and Netherlands great Edwin van der Sar are part of an 11-man panel that will select the 23-man shortlist for The Best FIFA Men’s Player 2017 award, FIFA announced on their official website on Wednesday.
Other football legends who are in the 11-man panel are Colombian icon Carlos Valderrama, Brazil 1994 and 2002 FIFA World Cup winner CAFU, Carles Puyol who won the 2010 World Cup with Spain, Japan’s Hidetoshi Nakata, Alex Frei of Switzerland, Enzo Francescoli of Uruguay, Landon Donovan of the United States of America and New Zeland’s Ivan Vicelich.
The 23-man shortlist will be decided by the legends on Thursday.
Nominees in other categories that will also be decided on Thursday are Best FIFA Women’s Coach, Best FIFA Men’s Coach and Best FIFA Women’s Player.
The ceremony where all winners will be crowned holds in London on Monday, 23 October 2017.
Okocha represented Nigeria at three FIFA senior World Cups in USA 1994, France 1998 and Korea/Japan 2002.
11-man panel to select The Best FIFA Men’s Player 2017 award shortlist:
They are Cafú (Brazil), Landon Donovan (USA), Enzo Francescoli (Uruguay), Alex Frei (Switzerland), Hidetoshi Nakata (Japan), Diego Maradona (Argentina), Austin Okocha (Nigeria), Carles Puyol (Spain), Carlos Valderrama (Colombia), Edwin van der Sar (Netherlands) and Ivan Vicelich (New Zealand).