13 November 2012

African Players in Europe - Diouf Performs in Dramatic Hanover Win

Senegal striker Mame Diouf scored one goal and set up another in Hanover 96's brilliant comeback from two down to beat VfB Stuttgart 4-2 in the German Bundesliga over the weekend.

It didn't go well for English Premier League players, with disappointing performances from Morocco's Adel Taarabt (Queens Park Rangers), and Newcastle United's Papiss Cisse (Senegal) that saw their teams lose.

Determined play by Newcastle's Demba Ba (Senegal) and Togolese striker Emmanuel Adebayor (Tottenham Hotspur) could not avert defeat.

Gabonese-French striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang meanwhile scored his eighth goal of the season to hand Saint Etienne a 2-0 victory in the French Ligue 1.

ENGLAND

ADEL TAARABT (Queens Park Rangers)

Mercurial Morocco playmaker Taarabt spurned a number of chances as QPR fell to a 1-0 loss at Stoke City that saw his side sink to the foot of the table. He chipped over the bar in the first half, while his deflected shot was tipped over by Stoke goalkeeper Asmir Begovic in the second period.

EMMANUEL ADEBAYOR (Tottenham Hotspur)

Togolese striker Adebayor was selected ahead of the in-form Jermain Defoe in his side's game at former club Manchester City but finished on the losing side in a 2-1 defeat. Adebayor had few sights of goal, but he did tee up Tom Huddlestone for a shot that whistled narrowly wide of the post in the first half.

DEMBA BA (Newcastle United)

Ba endured a frustrating afternoon as Newcastle were beaten 1-0 by his former club West Ham United. Match officials ruled the Senegalese striker's goal early in the second half invalid because visiting goalkeeper Jussi Jaaskelainen had clawed his header away before the ball had crossed the line.

PAPISS CISSE (Newcastle United)

Ba's team-mate and countryman Cisse had an even more forgettable game against West Ham. A handball and a woeful shot from 30 yards were the sum total of his efforts and he was replaced by Nigerian-born Shola Ameobi at half-time.

STEVEN PIENAAR (Everton)

South African midfielder Pienaar produced a typically industrious display as Everton beat Sunderland 2-1 to maintain their unlikely early challenge for Champions League qualification. Sunderland goalkeeper Simon Mignolet however repelled his powerful effort from a narrow angle in the first half.

FRANCE

ANDRE AYEW (Marseille)

Ghana forward Andre Ayew scored the opener to help Marseille keep tabs with Paris Saint Germain at the top of the French first division. The 22-year-old forward headed the ball off Mathieu Valbuena's clipped pass five minutes before the break in the 2-2 draw.

PIERRE-EMERICK AUBAMEYANG (Saint Etienne)

The free-scoring Aubameyang netted his eighth goal of the season when scoring Saint Etienne's second two minutes from time in their 2-0 win over Troyes to extend his club's unbeaten run in the league to seven matches and leave them five points off the leaders.

GERMANY

MAME DIOUF (Hanover 96)

The Senegal striker scored a goal and set up another in Hanover 96's dramatic fight-back to win 4-2 at VfB Stuttgart having been two goals down. Hanover roared back with four goals in 16 minutes with Diouf beating the goalkeeper on 68 minutes and setting up for Norway striker Mohammed Abdellaou to score.

ITALY

KWADWO ASAMOAH (GHA/Juventus)

Asamoah's reward for a consistent season so far was a spectacular goal, Juve's third of the night, in a 6-1 rout of Pescara. Coupled with Inter's defeat at Atalanta, it helped the Old Lady of Turin open up a four-point lead atop Serie A. It was Asamoah's second Juve goal.

KEVIN PRINCE BOATENG (GHA/AC Milan)

After a few weeks of being sidelined or used as a substitute due to injury niggles, Kevin Prince Boateng returned to the starting line-up for AC Milan, but could do little against a dominant Fiorentina side who ran out 3-1 victors at the San Siro. Milan now languish in 14th place.

SPAIN

MICHAEL ESSIEN (Real Madrid)

Ghanaian Michael Essien played the full 90 minutes for Real Madrid in a battling 2-1 win against Levante. Essien had an impressive role in the victory played in wet conditions on a heavy pitch, with a late winner by Alvaro Morata keeping them on Barcelona's and Atletico Madrid's heels at the top of La Liga.

OBAFEMI MARTINS (Levante)

For Madrid's opponents Levante, the Nigerian striker Obafemi Martins played the full game and set up his side's equaliser with a flick that Angel Rodriguez finished.

Senegalese midfielder Papa Diop came off the bench to play the final minutes and Morrocan international Nabil El Zhar started for Levante before being substituted in the second-half.

PAPA BABACAR (Sevilla)

Senegalese striker Papa Babacar came off the bench at half-time to try to help Sevilla fight back from a 2-0 deficit at Athletic Bilbao. He failed to score despite numerous chances in Sevilla's 2-1 defeat.

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