Arsenal and Gabon striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang went from zero to hero as he scored and got sent off in his sides 1-1 draw at Crystal Palace.
Aubameyang’s first half strike had given Arsenal the lead before Ghanaian striker Jordan Ayew pulled Palace level in the second half. The Gabon international was penalised for a challenge on Palace midfielder Max Meyer,and the yellow card originally shown by the official was overturned after a review by VAR.
The red card Aubameyang’s first in his 13-year professional career.
Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta said after the match; “I haven’t seen it but from what I’ve heard, I think it was a harsh challenge, there was no intention but maybe he mistimed it. We’ll see what the decision is. We’ll get to the point that we want. We have to respect the decisions and hopefully they will be more positive than negative.”
His opposite number Roy Hodgson was sure the Gabon striker deserved to be sent off; “I knew it was a bad challenge. I’m not accusing Aubameyang of trying to injure him but when I saw it, it’s no doubt that it’s a red card. I was surprised it took so long to make the decision.”
Arsenal will now be without their top scorer for Premier League fixtures against Sheffield United at home and the trip to Chelsea.
He will also miss the FA Cup fourth round tie against Bournemouth, before returning for the trip to Burnley on 2 February.
Super Falcons goalkeeper moves to France
Chiamaka Nnadozie joins Feminine Division One team Paris FC
Super Falcons goalkeeper, Chiamaka Nnadozie has completed her transfer to Paris FC in France from Nigeria Women Football League side, Rivers Angels.
Nnadozie is expected to sort out her visa issues in Nigeria before she joins up with her teammates in France.
The 19-year-old shot-stopper is expected to be the first-choice goalkeeper for her new side who are currently sixth on the table after 13 matches in the Feminine Division One.
Over the weekend, Paris FC defeated Montpellier 2-1 away from home and will next face Dijon on February 8.
2022 FIFA World Cup draw throws up interesting pairings
Draw ceremony took place in Cairo, Egypt, with 40 African countries paired in 10 groups
The Draw for the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar took place on Tuesday in Cairo, Egypt, with 40 African countries discovering their fates for the second round of the qualifying campaign.
The ceremony took place at The Nile Ritz-Carlton in Cairo, Egypt and saw the 14 first-round winners and the 26 highest-ranked African nations in the FIFA/Coca-Cola World Ranking drawn into ten groups of four ahead the penultimate stage of the continental journey to Qatar.
Group A: Algeria, Burkina Faso, Niger, Djibouti
Group B: Tunisia, Zambia, Mauritania, Equatorial Guinea
Group C: Nigeria, Cape Verde, Central African Republic, Liberia
Group D: Cameroon, Cote d’Ivoire, Mozambique, Malawi
Group E: Mali, Uganda, Kenya, Rwanda
Group F: Egypt, Gabon, Libya, Angola
Group G: Ghana, South Africa, Zimbabwe, Ethiopia
Group H: Senegal, Congo, Namibia, Togo
Group I: Morocco, Guinea, Guinea-Biisau, Sudan
Group J: DR Congo, Benin, Madagascar, Tanzania
Marcel Desailly, former Captain of the French Men’s national football team, who hails from Ghana and Clementine Toure, Coach of Côte d’Ivoire’s Women’s national football team, were on hand to assist Samson Adamu, CAF Director of Competitions, to conduct the draw for the group phase of the qualifiers which starts on October 2020 and runs until October 2021
The winners of the ten groups will qualify for the final round of the continental qualification on the road to Qatar.
The final round will see the ten teams drawn into five home and away ties, with the five winners securing the ticket to represent Africa at the tournament scheduled for 21 November to 18 December 2022 in Qatar.
Algeria’s Nabil Bentaleb joins Newcastle United
25-year-old completes loan move to Premier League club from Schalke 04
Newcastle United have completed the signing of Algeria international midfielder, Nabil Bentaleb from Schalke 04 on loan for the rest of the season, with an option to make the deal permanent.
The 25-year-old, who previously played for Tottenham Hotspur in the Premier League, represented his country at the 2014 FIFA World Cup and the 2015 and 2017 Africa Cup of Nations.
Speaking shortly after he was unveiled, Bentaleb told nufc.co.uk: “I’m very happy to come back to the Premier League, especially with a club such as Newcastle.
“The project really interested me. I wanted absolutely to come back to the Premier League. The coach had some trust in me and the club also – I saw that straight away – and I think it’s the perfect move for me.”
While Manager of the Magpies, Steve Bruce gave his thoughts after the Algerian was presented to the media: “He’s somebody who I paid particular attention to when he was at Spurs, when he broke through and got a big money move to Germany.
“He’s played at the highest level now for the last four or five years but he will come in hungry and feeling he has something to prove and will give us the competition we obviously need.
“With the numbers that we’ve got at the minute, he’s got a bit of experience and I think people will enjoy watching him play. He’ll come into the squad and I’m sure he’ll be a good acquisition for us.
“The fact that he’s played in the Premier League before helps, because we know that he can play and knows what the demands of the Premier League are. He’s gone from the Premier League to Schalke and played in the Champions League as well, so we’re delighted to get him. It’s a great signing.”
Bentaleb made 66 appearances while with Tottenham and scored his only goal against Newcastle United in a League Cup tie in December 2014 – before making the move to Schalke in the German Bundesliga in August 2016.
He has made 97 appearances for the Bundesliga outfit scoring 19 goals in the process.
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