Martin O'Neill

African talent is prominent - MON

by Stuart Vose

Boss impressed by talent coming out of African continent.

Martin O’Neill has been impressed by the standard at the African Cup of Nations and says the continent is well on the way to being a footballing powerhouse.

O’Neill followed the tournament with great interest and says the quality of football on display is on an upward curve.

Of course, the Sunderland manager has a few African stars – Kader Mangane, Ahmed Elmohamady and Stephane Sessegnon – in his squad.

And he says players heading to Europe are of a consistenly high – and ever improving – standard.

“The tournament’s been [part of the calendar] for some considerable time now,” O’Neill said.

“Pele once said he fancied an African side to win the World Cup before the turn of the last century, and while that didn’t happen, I tell you what – the continent has some very fine players.

“Those players have pushed themselves into major prominence both in this country and across Europe too.”

To mark the African Cup of Nations tournament, club sponsors Invest in Africa have launched a new ‘Twitter Predictor’.

Ahead of each match, Invest in Africa tweet a key statistic about the competing nations on its Twitter channel @investin_africa and ‘predict’ the outcome of the on-the-field encounter based on relative data indicators. 

These statistics will demonstrate the economic potential across Africa and promote the case that Africa is a credible business destination with impressive growth for investors and one that compares favourably to other emerging markets.

For example, the opening match between South Africa and Cape Verde will see the following tweeted by @investin_africa: South Africa 60% mobile phone saturation v Cape Verde 55%. IIA predicts SA win #AFCON #InvestinAfrica

The ‘Invest in Africa’ Cup of Nations Twitter Predictor is hosted on @investin_africa – take a look!