Matchday 5 of the Europa League came with its fireworks from Africans as they featured for their various teams across Europe.
Nigeria international, Samuel Chukwueze stole the show as Villareal ran out 1-0 victors over Turkish side, Sivasspor. Chukwueze scored the game’s only goal in the 75th minute.
Sivasspor came with a heavy presence of Africans in the 15 players registered for the game. Not less than 7 African internationals paraded for the Turkish Superliga team.
Malian goalkeeper, Mamadou Samassa was in goal for Sivasspor with his compatriot, Mustapha Yatabare featuring in the game. Gabonese defender, Aaron Appindang also started for the team. Ghana’s Isaac Cofie, Ivorian international Max-Alain Gradel and his compatriot and former international, Aruna Kone, and Chad’s Casimir Ninga completed the African collection for Sivasspor.
In Celtic’s 4-2 loss to AC Milan, Ivorian Franck Kessie and Algerian playmaker Ismael Bennacer featured for the Rossoneri. Celtic also had Ivorian, Ismaila Soro, and Cameroon’s Olivier Ntcham in the game.
Qarabag’s 1-1 draw against Maccabi Tel Aviv saw Ghanaian international, Owusu Kwabena in action for the Azerbaijani side.
Leicester lost 1-0 to Ukrainian Premier League side, Zorya Luhansk with Nigeria’s Wilfred Ndidi featuring after his lengthy injury spell. His compatriot, and teammate Kelechi Iheanacho played from start to finish for the Foxes.
Libya international, Ali Elmusrati played a key role in Sporting Braga’s 4-2 defeat of Greek side, AEK Athens.
In Slovan Liberec’s 2-1 win against Gent, Angola’s Nurio Fortuna featured for the Belgians as Guinean, Kamso Mara got one of Liberec’s two goals.
Sudan’s Al Hilal Omdurman Sign Jamaica Defender Alvas Elvis Powell
Sudan’s Al Hilal Omdurman have announced the signing of Jamaica defender Alvas Elvis Powell and Senegalese forward Ibrahima Mame N’Diaye.
Powell, 26, who joined from David Beckham’s MLS side Inter Miami sign a contract until the end of the season, with an option for a one-year extension.
Powell spent most of Inter Miami’s inaugural Major League Soccer season as an unused substitute, playing just four matches in total and only starting two of those.
The Jamaican previously played for Cincinnati FC where he spent the 2019 season. He also played for the Portland Timbers for six years.
Powell was a key member of the Portland Timbers squad that won the 2015 MLS Cup. He made 31 regular season appearances and six playoff appearances en route to the title, starting in each one.
He also has 49 caps for Jamaica including playing at two Gold Cups and two Caribbean Cups, which he won in 2014.
N’Diaye, 26, joined from Serbian side FK Čukarički. The forward played for ASC Linguère in Senegal before Serbian club, Napredak Kruševac, in 2012.
In 2017, N’Diaye joined Danish club Randers on a five-month contract, making seven competitive appearances for the side and scoring one goal in the Danish Cup.
In 2018, N’Diaye returned to Serbia and his former club Napredak Kruševac.
The deal for the players was reportedly organised and financially backed by Al Hilal’s honorary president Turki Al Sheikkh, a wealthy businessman who is also the chairman of Saudi’s General Entertainment Authority and former owner of Egyptian club Pyramids.
No Apology for 2010 World Cup Goal Miss – Former Super Eagle, Yakubu Aiyegbeni
Former Nigerian striker, Yakubu Aiyegbeni, says he won’t apologise for an open goal he missed at the 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa.
The Yak, as Aiyegbeni is known amongst fans, had missed what many considered a ‘simple’ tap-in during the Super Eagles must-win World Cup Group B match between Nigeria and South Korea at the Durban Stadium on June 22, 2010.
The goal could have put Nigeria ahead but with the encounter ending 2-2, many Nigerians are yet to forgive the former Portsmouth and Everton striker for the miss.
Speaking on Wednesday during an interview tagged Live with Yak on NationTV, Aiyegbeni said he has no apology for the miss.
He said, “I won’t apologise at all. Why should I? I have scored so many goals for Nigeria too. I have sacrificed a lot for the country. Did anyone apologise to me?
“I cannot apologise because it wasn’t a deliberate miss. I seriously wanted to score. But it wasn’t to be. So many have strikers have missed chances too and nobody will apologise so I won’t.”
In May 2020, the 38-year-old revealed that Nigerians still send him messages to express annoyance over the miss.
“I felt bad when I missed it but people still talk about it and are saying if I had scored, we should have gone to the next round,” the former Everton forward said in May 2020.
“Even if I scored, are we going to win the World Cup? That I am not sure of.
“I have sored so many goals for Nigeria and even when people thought we will never qualify for the World Cup, I stood up to be counted.
“I have always done my best to help the country but it’s weird that people still send me messages till date even on social media about that miss.
“They would write things like ‘I never forget o, I never forget the goal wey you miss o’ [I haven’t forgotten the goal you missed], ‘we no go forgive you o’ [we won’t forgive you], etc and I would be like wow.”
Aiyegbeni, who is Nigeria’s third highest goalscorer with scored 21 goals in 57 appearances for the Super Eagles, retired from football in 2017.
He started his career with Julius Berger FC in Lagos as a teenager in the Nigerian Premier League. He was later loaned to Portuguese club Gil Vicente. He made 250 appearances in the English Premier League, playing for Everton FC, Middlesborough FC, Portsmouth FC, and Blackburn.
He made four African Cup of Nations appearances for Nigeria and also played at the 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa.
Arsenal’s Aubameyang Misses Second Straight Game Over “Family Issue”
As Arsenal romped to a 3-1 win at the St. Mary’s Stadium on a rainy Tuesday evening, their Gabonese skipper, Pierre Emerick Aubameyang was missing in action again.
It was Arsenal’s second visit to Southampton in just over three days and it was Aubameyang’s second absence.
Unconfirmed reports coming out of Arsenal say it’s a personal problem as insinuations keep spreading about the roots and source of his upheavals.
While some have said Aubameyang is facing a divorce from his French wife after being reportedly caught cheating, others have said it’s about his family.
Aubameyang has finally come out to clear the air on Wednesday, as he revealed that his mum is battling a serious health condition.
The Arsenal captain has had a turbulent season and was just settling into his better days when family problems struck. He was excused by the club to attend to the pressing issues.
The Gunners hierarchy and manager, Mikel Arteta have promised to stay with him through the troubles as he hopes to get back to the team soon.
It is likely that Aubameyang will miss Arsenal’s clash against high flying Manchester United this weekend.
The Gunners, smarting from a strong run in the league, having picked 16 from their last 18 points after a dreadful start to the season, will hope to continue their boogey dance against the Red Devils.
Against Southampton on Tuesday, Ivorian winger, Nicolas Pepe was on the score sheet as he hopes to bounce back from a poor season so far.
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