Nigeria ranked above Ghana, Ivory Coast for number of foreign footballers

Nigeria has been ranked 9th in the world for the highest number of expatriate footballers.

Nigeria ranked above Ghana, Ivory Coast for number of foreign footballers

Izuchukwu Akawor 17:02 - 17.05.2023

West African countries dominated the list of footballers playing outside their association with Nigeria in the top 10 ahead of Ghana and the Ivory Coast.

Nigeria has been ranked as the African country with the most expatriates in football in the World ahead of Ghana and the Ivory Coast.

Pulse Sports Nigeria can report that Nigeria has been ranked ninth in the world out of 100 associations.

Nigeria ranked ninth in the world for foreign players
Nigeria Super Eagles players

This comes from the latest issue of the CIES Football Observatory ranking of the 100 associations with the highest number of expatriates in the world.

Nigeria beats Ghana and Ivory Coast

In their weekly issue made public on Wednesday and monitored by Pulse Sports, Nigeria was ranked ninth with a total of 385 players outside their association.

Ghana in the CIES list
Andre Ayew and his brother Jordan are amongst the Ghanaians outside. (Shutterstock)

This placed Nigeria ahead of the likes of Ghana with 318 footballers, Ivory Coast with 227 and Senegal with 211.

A breakdown of Nigeria’s numbers according to different age grades shows that about 153 of the players are aged 23 years old or under.

Sadio Mane and his Senegal teammates celebrate after they beat Equatorial Guinea 3-1

145 of them are between the ages of 23-26, 57 are aged between 27-30 while there are 30 football players aged 30 years and above from Nigeria.

Brazil tops the world list

In terms of the country with the highest in the world, five-time FIFA World Cup winners, Brazil, came out tops.

CIES football names Brazil highest in the World.
Brazil has the highest expatriate in the World.

The Samba nation has a total of 1289 expatriates, closely followed by France with 1033 football players.

Argentina (905), England (535), and Spain (458) complete the top five. Other countries in the top ten bracket include Colombia (448), Germany (446), Croatia (407), Nigeria (385) and Serbia (380) players.

Nigeria beats Ghana
Victor Osimhen and Samuel Chukwueze are two of Nigeria's brightest exports.

Top 10 African countries

  1. Nigeria (385)
  2. Ghana (318)
  3. Ivory Coast (227)
  4. Senegal (211)
  5. Cameroon (135)
  6. Mali (90)
  7. Gambia (55)
  8. Guinea (52)
  9. Algeria (51)
  10. Morocco (46)

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