Egypt’s Mohamed Elneny has broken a 64-game drought in the English Premier League since joining Arsenal five years ago by scoring in a 2-0 win over Newcastle at the weekend.
The 28-year-old midfielder needed just six minutes at St James Park to complete his barren run and Gabon captain Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang doubled the lead midway through the second half.
The win ended a three-game winless streak by Arsenal ahead of a Europa League semi-final second leg against Villarreal in the Emirates on Thursday.
Here, AFP Sport takes a look at the performances of Africans in the big European leagues:
MOHAMED ELNENY (Arsenal)
Elneny, who joined the Gunners from Swiss club Basel in 2016, said he had given a lot of thought recently to the possibility of scoring in the Premier League. “I had scored in the Champions League and the Europa League, but not in the Premier League,” he said on the club’s website. When Aubameyang missed his cross kick from Hector Bellerin, the ball rolled to Elneny on the edge of the box and he pierced a low shot in front of Martin Dubravka.
PIERRE-EMERICK AUBAMEYANG (Arsenal)
He scored for the first time in seven games as his spectacular strike concluded a comfortable victory. The Arsenal captain had recently been hospitalized because of malaria resumed in international service with Gabon in March. It was the last in a series of setbacks for Aubameyang this season, but he gave a glimpse of his class in the 66th minute. Gabriel Martinelli curled up on a cross from the left to get his punching partner to jump off his feet for an agile volley that crashed in front of Dubravka up close. It was the 31-year-old’s 15th goal this season.
VICTOR OSIMHEN (Naples)
Nigerian striker Osimhen scored for the third game in a row, connecting with a room above Lorenzo Insigne, after 13 minutes in Napoli. It was his fifth goal in six games and his eighth this season. Cagliari scored with the last kick of the game to snatch a 1-1 draw, but fifth-placed Napoli remain in contention for the Champions League.
ACHRAF HAKIMI (Inter Milan)
Moroccan defender Hakimi scored the second goal in added time in a 2-0 victory for Inter Milan at Crotone as his side won their first Serie A title since 2010, and 19th overall. Nicolo Barella enabled the 22-year-old former Real Madrid player to complete his seventh goal in an impressive debut season in Serie A.
JEREMIE BOGA / HAMED TRAORE (Sassuolo)
Atalanta goalkeeper Pierluigi Gollini was sent off for a reckless challenge against Ivorian striker Boga after 22 minutes. Another foul, on fellow Ivorian midfielder Hamed Traoré, saw Sassuolo award a penalty seven minutes after the break, which they converted to a 1-1 draw.
AMADOU HAIDARA (RB Leipzig)
The Malian midfielder was replaced at half-time by Christopher Nkunku on the right wing before Emil Forsberg’s 121st minute volley sealed Leipzig’s 2-1 win at Werder Bremen as a half – Tense final of the German Cup continued. Leipzig will face Borussia Dortmund on May 13 in the final.
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