Manchester City and Cote d’Ivoire midfielder, Yaya Toure, has been named the 2013 BBC African Footballer of the Year.
The 30-year-old, who has been nominated for the past four years, beat Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, John Mikel Obi, Victor Moses and Jonathan Pitroipa to the award.
He told BBC Sport: “I think I’ve been nominated for five years in a row and finally winning the award is amazing.
“It’s a fantastic achievement because I don’t think there has ever been as many quality African players in top level international football as there are now: Aubameyang, Pitroipa, Mikel, Moses, Salomon Kalou, Gervinho… we have fantastic players.
“I also think African football is improving and that means a lot to us. And as an African, I’m very happy.”
The list of nominees for the BBC award, was compiled by 44 football experts across African, who used criteria such as skill, technical ability, team work, fair play and consistency. A record number of fans then voted for their favourite either online or by text message.
Toure expressed his appreciation to all the fans who voted him as winner.
“Thank you to all the fans around the world who continue to support me. It shows how much fans love you and appreciate your job as well,” he said.
“It’s something special because it’s not the vote of the manager or the club or the captain of the national team, it’s just the fans.
“When you have a lot of fans behind you, it’s always amazing. And I’m very happy as it is the fans who have given it to me – so I’m very appreciative.”