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FA Cup joy for Kone, sadness for Ba

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15 Apr 2013 13:46:57

FA Cup joy for Kone, sadness for Ba

African stars had mixed luck in the FA Cup semi-finals at the weekend with Ivorian Arouna Kone helping Wigan triumph while a superb goal from Senegalese Demba Ba could not prevent Chelsea going out.

Kone burst clear of several defenders to create the first goal as Wigan took time off from an English Premier League relegation struggle to defeat second-tier Millwall 2-0 and earn a first FA Cup final appearance.

Ba scored with an acrobatic half-volley for Chelsea to halve a two-goal deficit against fellow giants Manchester City, but an equaliser eluded the title-holders at a packed Wembley stadium.

ENGLAND

AROUNA KONE (Wigan Athletic)

Kone set his side on their way to a 2-0 victory over Millwall in the FA Cup semi-finals as Wigan qualified for the final for the first time in their 81-year history. The Ivorian striker created the opening goal in the 25th minute, chesting down a high ball and sprinting away from three defenders before crossing for Shaun Maloney to volley home.

STEPHANE SESSEGNON (Sunderland)

Benin midfielder Sessegnon opened the floodgates as Sunderland recorded a memorable 3-0 win at derby rivals Newcastle United to ease their relegation concerns. The former Paris Saint-Germain player broke the deadlock in the 27th minute with a low strike from 25 yards and also teed up David Vaughan for Sunderland's third goal.

VICTOR ANICHEBE (Everton)

Anichebe scored Everton's second goal as David Moyes' side beat Queens Park Rangers 2-0 to keep pace with the contenders for Champions League qualification. Having hit the post earlier in the game, the Nigerian forward flicked a close-range shot past goalkeeper Julio Cesar in the 56th minute to register his sixth league goal of the campaign.

DEMBA BA (Chelsea)

Senegalese striker Ba scored another fine FA Cup goal but it proved in vain as Chelsea fell 2-1 to Manchester City in the semi-finals. Having previously netted a stunning volley to sink Manchester United in the last eight, Ba reduced the arrears in the 66th minute by hooking an acrobatic half-volley past goalkeeper Costel Pantilimon.

KEI KAMARA (Norwich City)

The Sierra Leonean forward played an unwitting role as Arsenal stormed back to win 3-1 at home to Norwich City. The visitors were leading 1-0 late in the game when Kamara was penalised for dragging Arsenal striker Olivier Giroud to the ground and Mikel Arteta scored the resulting penalty to spark the home side's fightback.

FRANCE

BAKARY KONE (Lyon)

The Burkina Faso defender scored the decisive goal in his side's much-needed 3-1 victory at home to Toulouse. Kone rose unmarked at the far post to meet Clement Grenier's volleyed cross and power a header beyond Olivier Blondel to make it 2-1 to Remi Garde's side four minutes after half-time. The goal was the centre-back's first of the season.

LUDOVIC SANE (Bordeaux)

The Senegalese international scored Bordeaux's opening goal in a 4-2 victory against Montpellier. Sane powered home a header from Gregory Sertic's inswinging corner on 11 minutes for his first goal of the campaign.

JOHN BOYE (Rennes)

The Ghana defender netted Rennes' second goal in the Brittany outfit's 4-2 defeat at Evian. Boye capitalised on a misjudgement from Evian goalkeeper Bertrand Laquait to nod Julien Feret's corner into an unguarded net to level the scores at 2-2 on 69 minutes. It was his second Ligue 1 goal this year.

GERMANY

ABDUL RAHMAN BABA (Greuther Fuerth)

The Ghana left-back lasted 38 minutes for bottom side Fuerth against Borussia Dortmund as Poland captain Jakub Blaszczykowski ran riot down the right wing as BVB raced into a 4-0 lead after 33 minutes. Goals by Germany midfielders Ilkay Gundogan (2) and Mario Goetze, as well as Blaszczykowski, left Fuerth reeling with Baba carrying the can.

MAME DIOUF (Hanover 96)

Despite 10 goals in 23 league games this season, the Senegal striker failed to score for the fourth match running as Hanover lost 3-1 to Freiburg to slip further away from the Europa League spots for next season. After Freiburg took an early lead, Diouf provided the pass for midfielder Konstantin Rausch to equalise, but Freiburg pulled away with two more goals either side of half-time.

ITALY

INNOCENT EMEGHARA (Siena)

Emeghara scored Siena's dramatic winner in their 3-2 victory over bottom Serie A side Pescara. That goal was his seventh in 11 matches since he joined the Robur in January and takes them two points clear of the relegation zone. The Nigeria-born Swiss international broke quickly on the counter attack with Salvador Argu, whose low cross gave the 23-year-old an easy tap in.

MOUNIR EL HAMDAOUI (Fiorentina)

Moroccan El Hamdaoui made his first start for Fiorentina since last December in their 2-0 win at Atalanta. With Stevan Jovetic and Adem Ljajic injured, El Hamdaoui was the lone frontman for the Viola and struggled to get into the match before being taken off after 57 minutes.

BOUKARY DRAME (Chievo)

France-born Senegal international Drame was vital as Chievo all but clinched their Serie A status with a 0-0 draw at home to Catania. The left-back was his usual marauding self, managing to swing in a few dangerous crosses, while winning his aerial battles before being replaced in the 65th minute.

RUSSIA

LACINA TRAORE (Anzhi Makhachkala)

The Ivory Coast forward played an important role in the 3-0 thrashing of Volga Nizhny Novgorod to end Anzhi's five-match winless streak. Traore kept the hosts' defence under constant pressure and scored the second goal just before the break.

EZECHIEL N'DOUASSEL (Terek Grozny)

The Chad striker scored in his second consecutive league match, lifting hosts Terek into a 2-1 lead over 10-man Kuban Krasnodar with a precise penalty kick 19 minutes from time after he was fouled. However, the visitors snatched a late equaliser.

SPAIN

MUBARAK WAKASO (Espanyol)

Wakaso scored for the second consecutive weekend and also set-up Espanyol's second goal as they drew 3-3 with Valencia. The Ghanaian headed home Sergio Garcia's cross in first-half stoppage time to give the hosts the lead and it was from another Garcia cross that he cushioned a header into the path of Joan Verdu to make it 2-1 for Espanyol with nine minutes remaining.

NOSA IGIEBOR (Real Betis)

Igiebor came off the bench to rescue a point for Betis in a pulsating 3-3 derby draw against Sevilla. The Nigerian had been on the field only seven minutes when he bulleted home Dorlan Pabon's cross to complete Los Verdiblancos' comeback after they had trailed 3-0.

ALEX SONG (Barcelona)

Cameroonian Song played the full 90 minutes as Barcelona moved a step closer to the La Liga title with a 3-0 victory over Real Zaragoza.


AFP

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