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Bony leads the way for Africans in Europe

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27 Jan 2014 10:01:59

Bony leads the way for Africans in Europe

African players were to the forefront for their clubs in Europe at the weekend, notably in England where a brace from Wilfried Bony lifted Swanwea to a 2-1 win at Birmingham City in the FA Cup fourth round.

Bony's fellow Ivorian Salomon Kalou netted his ninth goal in all competitions for Ligue 1 side Lille in France, while in Spain, Jonathan Sundy Zongo became the first ever Burkanibe player to score in La Liga.

ENGLAND

WILFRIED BONY (Swansea City)

Ivorian striker Bony was Swansea's saviour after coming off the bench to score twice as they came from behind to win 2-1 at Birmingham City in the FA Cup fourth round. Summoned from the dug-out at half-time with his side a goal down, Bony volleyed home a 67th-minute equaliser before coolly rounding goalkeeper Colin Doyle and chipping in the winner two minutes later.

VICTOR MOSES (Liverpool)

On-loan Chelsea winger Moses marked his first start in nearly a month by opening the scoring in Liverpool's 2-0 success at second-tier Bournemouth. The Nigeria international broke the deadlock in the 26th minute, gathering a crossfield pass from Luis Suarez and drilling a low shot inside the left-hand post from the edge of the penalty area.

SAMUEL ETO'O (Chelsea)

Eto'o played a central role as Chelsea beat Stoke City 1-0 to set up a fifth-round showdown with Manchester City. The Cameroon superstar won the free-kick from which Oscar scored the game's only goal in the 27th minute and almost got on the score-sheet in the second half when he prodded wide from close range following a goal-mouth scramble.

YAYA TOURE (Manchester City)

Toure endured a rare off-day as City came close to being bundled out of the FA Cup by second-tier Watford. The Ivory Coast powerhouse was named in a strong City starting XI, but he was powerless to prevent his side falling two goals down before a Sergio Aguero hat-trick inspired the hosts to a 4-2 win.

SPAIN

JONATHAN SUNDY ZONGO (Almeria)

Zongo became the first ever Burkanibe player to score in La Liga with the only goal as Almeria moved out the relegation zone with a 1-0 win over Getafe.

SIMAO MATE JUNIOR (Levante)

Simao scored his first ever goal for Levante as he grabbed the winner in a thrilling 3-2 win away at Sevilla on Saturday. The Mozambican midfielder pounced to slot home from close range 15 minutes from time to inflict Sevilla's first league defeat in nine games.

CEDRIC MABWATI (Real Betis)

Congolese winger Cedric was shown a straight red card as Real Betis' relegation fears increased with a 4-2 defeat away to Celta Vigo on Friday night. The 21-year-old was given his marching orders for an unnecessary lunge on Barcelona loanee Rafinha Alcantara in stoppage time and will now miss the Andalusians' clash with Espanyol next weekend.

FRANCE

SALOMON KALOU (Lille)

Ivorian Kalou scored his ninth goal in all competitions this season to put Lille in front against Rennes on Friday, but in the end the northern side had to settle for a 1-1 draw that continued their poor start to 2014. However, results elsewhere allowed Lille to move four points clear of the chasing pack as they maintain their grip on the third and final Champions League qualifying spot in Ligue 1.

MUSTAPHA YATABARE (Guingamp)

The French-born Malian international striker was top scorer in Guingamp's run to promotion from Ligue 2 last season and then scored five goals in the first nine games of this campaign. A long drought followed, but he finally got back on target for the Brittany club in Saturday's 1-1 draw with league leaders Paris Saint-Germain. The tall 27-year-old, who has been the target of interest from Turkish side Trabzonspor this month, headed home with just six minutes left to put Guingamp ahead, only for Alex to equalise soon after for PSG.

STOPPILA SUNZU (Sochaux)

With Nathan Sinkala suspended and Emmanuel Mayuka only on the bench at kick-off, the 24-year-old centre-back Sunzu was the only member of Sochaux's Zambian contingent to start for Herve Renard's side against Ajaccio on Saturday. Sochaux needed a stoppage-time equaliser to come away with a point from Corsica in the meeting of Ligue 1's bottom two sides, but they remain a daunting nine points adrift of safety.

SALIOU CISS (Valenciennes)

The 24-year-old Ciss, who came through the renowned Diambars academy in his native Senegal, has become a regular in the Valenciennes side since arriving last summer from Tromso in Norway. He again lined up at left-back in his club's clash with Lorient on Saturday. However, his first-half own-goal left Valenciennes chasing the game. They eventually came back to earn a draw, though, meaning they have now taken seven points from a possible nine and lie just three points adrift of safety with a game in hand on Evian, the club immediately above them in the standings.

JONATHAN MENSAH (Evian)

The 23-year-old Ghanaian international defender has been a first-pick in the Evian defence this season, finally establishing himself in the team after joining from Udinese in 2011. However, last season's French Cup runners-up are struggling just now and Mensah was sent off in the first half of a 3-0 defeat away to in-form Lyon. The result left Evian without a win in six Ligue 1 games since a 2-0 defeat of Paris Saint-Germain last month, and they lie just three points clear of the relegation zone.

ITALY

KWADWO ASAMOAH (Juventus)

Asamoah started in his usual left midfield role for the champions for a potentially tricky visit to Lazio, but became the sacrificial lamb after 26 minutes when Juve 'keeper Gianluigi Buffon gifted the hosts a penalty after hauling down striker Miroslav Klose. The Italy goalkeeper was red carded, Marco Storari took his place and Juve coach Antonio Conte reshuffled his 10-man side with Asamoah joining the substitutes bench. Antonio Candreva struck from the spot for Lazio but Juve came back to level on the hour thanks to Fernando Llorente.

SAPHIR TAIDER (Inter)

Taider started on the bench for Inter as the Nerazzurri, hosting basement side Catania, aimed to end a disappointing spell which has seen them win only three of their last five games. The Algerian international midfielder was given his chance just after the hour when he replaced injured Esteban Cambiasso and five minutes later saw two shots blocked as the hosts continued to struggle for a goal. In the end Inter were held to a scoreless draw and although they remain fifth are still 11 points off the first Champions League qualifying place.


AFP

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