MIKEL MAKES AFRICAN SHORTLIST

John Mikel Obi has been nominated for the 2012 African Footballer of the Year award.

At the end an historic year for the midfielder in which he played a big part in Chelsea becoming European champions and last month, helped Nigeria qualify for the Africa Cup of Nations, he is in a list of 10 players in contention for the honour.

Our former striker Didier Drogba is also nominated; he is a previous winner on two occasions.

Mikel was the Young African Player of the Year and named in the African Team of the Year in 2005 when he was with his previous club Lyn Oslo.

The winner will be announced at a ceremony on 20 December in Accra, Ghana.

The full list of nominees, which includes last season's winner Yaya Toure is:

Alexander Song ( Barcelona and Cameroon)
Andre Ayew (Marseille and Ghana)
Christopher Katongo (Henan Construction and Zambia)
Demba Ba (Newcastle United and Senegal)
Didier Drogba (Shanghai Shenhua and Ivory Coast)
Gervinho (Arsenal and Ivory Coast)
John Mikel Obi (Chelsea and Nigeria)
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (Saint Etienne and Gabon)
Yaya Toure (Manchester City and Ivory Coast)
Younes Belhanda (Montpellier and Morocco)