The Greatest Strikers of the 1990s
No.4 Nwankwo Kanu
Given his size (6 ft 6), one would have expected that Nwankwo Kanu's role as a forward should have been as a target man, but his style was quite the opposite. With quick feet and great technical skills, Kanu was a fantastic dribbler, capable of moments of magic that would quickly open up opportunities for himself or teammates. Ajax had snapped Kanu up as a 17 year old after he'd helped Nigeria to win the 1993 U-17 World Championships and three fantastic seasons in Amsterdam saw him claim three Eredivisie titles, a Champions league victory (and runners-up) and an Intercontinental Cup. By 1996 Kanu was rated as one of football's hottest properties, was named African Footballer of the Year Award and was signed by Serie A giants Inter. However, his time at the San Siro was affected by a serious heart defect that was discovered in his first season there. Thankfully he was able to undergo successful surgery and got his career back on track with a move to Arsenal in early 1999. Despite being unable to dislodge the prolific partnership of Thierry Henry and Dennis Bergkamp, Kanu would become something of a cult hero at Highbury with some of his performances, particularly as a substitute.
No.3 Roger Milla
Something of an icon of the World Cup in the 1990s, Roger Milla may not have played at the very highest level of domestic football in Europe, but he certainly came to the fore when he donned the shirts of the Indomitable Lions at football’s biggest event. His iconic goal celebrations at Italia'90 became one of the tournament's most memorable moments, whilst four years later at USA'94 he smashed his own record as he became the oldest goalscorer at a World Cup tournament when he scored against Russia as a 42 year-old.
No.2 Jean-Pierre Papin
No.1 George Weah
What a player. The great Liberian striker remains the only African footballer to win the Ballon d'Or, a feat he achieved back in 1995 during his spell with Milan. It says something about George Weah's standing in his own country that he has subsequently gone on to become the country’s president, winning the 2017 election.