African professionals in Europe achieved another bright match day during the weekend, although the goals did not flow like other times most of the players made their presence felt by bailing out their respective teams.
In England, Champions League winners Liverpool clinched a fourth successive win on Saturday to stay top on the Premier League table, with Senegal’s star Sadio Mane scoring one of the Reds’ three goals over Burnley at Turf Moor.
Jordan Ayew saved his side Crystal Palace blushes when they hosted his former club Aston Villa at Selhurst Park on Saturday. The Ghana international scored the only goal of the meeting, as the Eagles recorded their second win of the new campaign.
On Sunday, the Emirates Stadium was home to EPL’s biggest attraction of the weekend between cross-town rivals Arsenal and Tottenham, which involved three Africans: Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (Gabon) and Ivory Coast pair of Nicholas Pepe and Serge Aurier – on opposing sides.
Pepe, who is still adjusting to life in England, provided assist for the Gunners’ first half equaliser delivered by Alexandre Lacazette. And when it looked like Spurs would walk away taller, Aubameyang snatched the leveller in 71 minutes to salvage a point for his side.
In Spain, Atletico Madrid maintained their lead in La Liga thanks to Thomas Partey’s late goal which handed Diego Simeone and his men a 3-2 victory on Sunday.
In neighbouring Portugal, Mali international Moussa Marega was Man of the Match when his club FC Porto crushed Vitoria de Guimaraes 3-0 in Primeira Liga on Sunday. The 28-year-old hit a brace against his former side who bagged two red cards.
We have two villains on our list of the weekend. They are Napoli defender Kalidou Koulibaly from Senegal whose own goal gifted Juventus a 3-2 win in the Serie A breathtaking cracker; and DR Congo international Ngonda Muzinga, who scored an own goal against his side Dijon in the French Ligue 1, as they eventually succumbed to a 2-0 defeat against Angers.