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Names to watch

Latest update : 2008-01-27

A review of some of the major stars that will be taking part in the competition: Drogba from the Ivory Coast (pictured), Mali's Kanoute, Cameroon's Eto’o...

Didier Drogba: The winner of the Confederation of African Football’s Best Player Award in 2006 and shortlisted for the honour in 2007, the Ivoirian striker is one of the world’s best footballers. Yet although he’s collected a number of titles with his English club Chelsea, Drogba is still to win an international championship. He came close at CAN 2006, making it to the finals with the 'Elephants', Ivory Coast’s national team (and losing to Egypt). This time round, the country’s football idol hopes to take the Elephants to their second title, after their first and only victory in 1992.

Samuel Eto’o: Despite a nightmare season in 2007, Cameroon's Samuel Eto'o is the other giant of African football. In Spain, he is admired by Barça fans as much as he is feared and dreaded by his rivals. Elegant and elusive on the field, his great speed and precision will be precious assets for the Untamable Lions.

Michael Essien: The big star of the Ghana team (in the absence of Stephen Appiah), Chelsea’s tireless midfielder carries on his shoulders the hopes and expectations of an entire nation, this year's host country. The Black Stars will count on the experience, selflessness and power that earned Essien a rock-solid reputation in Europe.

Frédéric Kanouté: Coveted by Europe's major clubs, FC Seville's Malian striker has proved throughout the last two seasons the extent of his talent by winning two UEFA cups and a European Supercup.

Date created : 2008-01-17