By The Atlas Lions, Nov 21 2018 04:47PM
(Africanfootball.com) Morocco international Medhi Benatia has set his sights on clinching the 2018 BBC African Footballer of the Year (AFOTY) award.
The 31-year-old is part of a five-man shortlist that also includes Kalidou Koulibaly (Senegal), Sadio Mane (Senegal), Thomas Partey (Ghana) and Mohamed Salah (Egypt).
Benatia played an integral role in helping Juventus to a seventh consecutive Serie A title, the 2017-18 UEFA Champions League quarterfinals and also scored a brace in the Old Lady's 4-0 win over AC Milan in the Coppa Italia final.
"I'd like to say that I am in this job to win titles. Personally, I am lucky to prepare every day and come to the training grounds to train with only one aim: to win," Benatia told BBC Sport.
“That's what makes me very happy. I have been in football for many years and I have learnt that the most important thing is not to participate but to win.
“So for me, a defender - it's rare for a defender to be nominated. So I'm very pleased. Of course, I have a special thought for all my educators, all my trainers who made me work, who made me progress every day.”
Benatia made a return to the Morocco national team this past weekend as the Atlas Lions booked their place at the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations with a 2-0 win over Cameroon.