Over the years, Goal’s resident cartoonist Omar Momani has celebrated some of the big moments in the careers and lives of Africa’s greatest players.
Many of the players he’s portrayed over the years have qualified for the inaugural African Legends Cup of Nations, which has reached its semi-final stage this weekend.
The likes of Mohamed Salah, Sadio Mane and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang—all Momani favourites—have fallen by the wayside during the 32-man competition so far, as has Nwankwo Kanu, whose inimitable grin has been depicted in this article’s main image.
However, all four of the Alcon semi-finalists—Didier Drogba, Samuel Eto’o, Yaya Toure and George Weah—are also among Momani’s favourite muses, with the artist having covered the quartet’s development and progress over the years.
Here are some of our favourite cartoons containing Africa’s finest players over the years.
Ahead of the 2018 World Cup, in light of his sublime Player of the Year-winning season with Liverpool, Salah appeared to be on top of the world.
Unfortunately, the campaign would end in bitter disappointment for Salah.
He was injured in the UCL final against Real Madrid, and subsequent fitness concerns overshadowed what proved to be a frustrating, unfulfilling and—ultimately—short World Cup for Salah’s Pharaohs.
— Ed Dove (@EddyDove) April 11, 2020
These two graphics celebrate two of the big narratives of George Weah’s life, let alone his career.
The first shows some of the Liberia President’s biggest moments, becoming the first African player to win the Ballon d’Or, signing for Arsene Wenger’s AS Monaco, and, finally, becoming the President of Liberia.
The second image celebrates the second generation sons of Weah and France great Lillian Thurma—both of whom began to establish themselves at Paris Saint-Germain alongside the eternal Gigi Buffon, a contemporary of both Weah and Thuram.
The African influence at Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool—as referred to above—has been one of Momani’s favourite themes in recent years.
Mane and Salah—both of whom have been eliminated from the Alcon—have been portrayed regularly by Momani, who has captured the exuberance and joy of this current Liverpool side.
“It’s something like Kloppomania here! Because he is how he is. Genuine and real – simply Kloppo.” – Joel Matip@omomani knocks out out of the park again…love the knee pads.
— Ed Dove (@EddyDove) June 11, 2019
Finally, Samuel Eto’o and Didier Drogba—who meet in the first Alcon semi—have been two of Momani’s favourite subjects over the years.
The next four images celebrate some key landmarks in Eto’o’s career—his reunion with Jose Mourinho at Chelsea, his late-career return to Italy with Sampdoria and, first of all, his immense trophy haul across his time with both Barcelona and the Nerazzurri.
Omar Momani Cartoon
Here, Momani captures one of the main crossroads of Drogba’s career, as his time at Galatasaray came to an end and he made a big decision on the next steps of his career.
Ultimately, he returned to London—to Chelsea—where he would win another Premier League title in the 2014-15 season.