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Ighalo Partners Eto’O In African Team Of The Week

There were fantastic performances by African stars in various leagues and Cup competitions in Europe last weekend. Completesportsnigeria.com's  IZUCHUKWU OKOSI  highlight the outstanding performers for this week's edition of African Team Of The Week series. 
 

GOAL

 Rais M'bolhi (Antalyaspor, Turkey)             

Algeria keeper Rais M'bolhi was exemplary in Antalyaspor's 3-0 thrashing of Bursaspor on Monday night.

The 29-year-old goalkeeper who has over 50 national team caps for the Desert Foxes was instrumental in his team's counter attacking moves as his long passes and distribution were key. 

M'bolhi touched the ball 36 times and distributed at the rate of 75%. 

DEFENCE

Lamine Gassama (Lorient, France)
Lamine Gassama was impressive in Lorient's 1-1 home draw against Olympique  Marseille on Saturday  though he was booked (yellow) in the 82nd minute.

The 25-year-old defender made four tackles, five interceptions and one clearance in the game. He committed two fouls. 

It was his 25th Ligue 1 appearance of the season.  He touched the ball 48 times, completed 35 of his passes and played seven long balls into the opposition half, four of them accurate. 

 Medhi Benatia (Bayern Munich, Germany)
Morocco's Medhi Benatia who had been dogged by injury is back fully fit and was a rock in Bayern Munich's defence as they romped to a 5-0 whitewash of Anthony Ujah's Werder Bremen at the Allianz Arena. 

Benatia stopped the Nigerian in his tracks in some of their 'battles' on Saturday. Both Africans played for 90 minutes over the weekend.

John Boye (Sivasspor, Turkey)

Black Stars of Ghana central defender John Boye had a good individual performance in Sivasspor's 1-0 win against Nigeria's Kenneth Omeruo's Kasimpasa on Monday night

Boye was yellow-carded five minutes after the start of the second half but his defensive game was impressive. He made six tackles, 11 clearances but committed two fouls, one of them leading to his eighth booking in 17 league games. 

  MIDFIELD

Cheikhou Kouyate (West Ham, England)                                          
Manchester United's Anthony Martial may have been awarded the official Man-of-the-Match prize in the FA Cup quarter final first leg clash between Man United and West Ham United which ended in a 1-1 draw but Cheikhou Kouyate was a shield for the Hammers in the defensive midfield role on Sunday.
 

The Senegalese made five defensive tackles, three interceptions and one clearance.  He committed two fouls in the game and was fouled once himself whilst he drove forward with the ball. Kouyate completed 26 of his passes (88.5% accurate) and launched one long ball into the Red Devils half. 

The draw forces a replay for both teams with the winner playing against Everton in the semi finals at Wembly Stadium next week Tuesday(March 22).

 

Kwado Asamoah (Juventus, Italy)       

Black Stars of Ghana midfielder Kwado Asamoah was impressive in Juventus' 1-0 home win against Sassuolo on Friday evening at the Juventus Stadium.

The midfielder had one shot on target and made two key passes. He was always driving forward with the ball and made one tackle and two interceptions.  

 

The midfielder committed three fouls and was fouled once himself.  Asamoah completed 30 of his passes (86.7% accurate). 

Adlène Guédioura (Watford , England)                                  

Algeria's Adlène Guédioura scored what could go down as one of the best goals in the history of the FA Cup on Sunday against Arsenal at the Emirates Stadium with a 63rd minute thunderbolt that left David Ospina helpless. 

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The powerful strike was the Algerian's only shot in the game. He completed two dribbles and was fouled two times. He was however disposed five times.   Guédioura completed 19 of his passes. 

 

The win ensured that Arsenal's hopes of a third successive FA Cup triumph was ruined. 

Aminu Umar (Osmanlispor, Turkey)                

Former Flying Eagles of Nigeria winger Aminu Umar continued his fine form for Turkish side Osmanlispor over the weekend as he scored a brace in a 3-2 away win against Istanbul Basaksehir on Saturday evening

The pacey forward who was once on the books of Wikki Tourists of Bauchi scored in the 20th and 38th minutes. He also assisted a goal in the 84th minute scored by Senegal's Papa Alioune Ndiaye. 

This performance earned him the Man-of-the-Match award, his third 'MOtM' award of the season. The double strike now takes his tally to three in the season after 19 league appearances. 

His compatriot and another former Flying Eagles midfielder Raheem Lawal was in action in the game but was substituted in the 63rd minute.

Mohamed Salah (AS Roma, Italy)                   

Egypt's superstar Mohamed Salah was outstanding for AS Roma in their 2-1 away win against Udinese at the Dacia Arena on Sunday.

The Pharaoh who is expected to be influential for Egypt in their 2017 Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers Nigeria assisted Edin Dzeko's 15th minute opener though he was substituted in the 91st minute for Kevin Strootman.

Aside his assist, Salah made three key passes and had one shot on target. His heat map shows he touched the ball 68 times and completed 48 passes. 

ATTACK

 

Samuel Eto'o (AntalyasporTurkey)                      

Four time African Footballer of the Year Samuel Eto'o scored a brace but also missed a penalty in Antalyaspor's 3-0 home win against Bursaspor on Monday night at the Antyla Stadium. 

The Cameroon legend scored in the 68th and 89th minutes of the game which now takes his tally in the current league season in Turkey  to 16 in 24 matches. He was however handed his fifth yellow card of the season in the 76th minute. 

Eto'o's heat map shows that he touched the ball 52 times in 90 minutes. Three of his four shots were on target while he made one key pass.  The skillful forward won one aerial duel and had 39 pass completion. 

Odion  Ighalo (Watford, England)                              

Super Eagles of Nigeria's Odion Ighalo had scored just one FA Cup and one Premier League goal prior to last Sunday's FA Cup quarter finals clash against holders Arsenal.

However the striker chose this occasion to break his duck as he scored the Hornets' first of two goals in a 2-1 victory at the Emirates. 

Ighalo turned brilliantly with Gabriel marking him and fired a low shot past David Ospina in Arsenal goal in the 50th minute.

 

Though Ighalo hobbled off with a suspected thigh problem, he did enough to earn high ratings in the game. 

The Nigerian played three shots and completed 16 of his passes (81.3%).  He touched the ball 30 times before he was substituted. 

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