African players week in Europe: Bailly, Mane fly African flag

AFP , Monday 21 Aug 2017

Liverpool's Sadio Mane (Reuters)

Ivory Coast centre-back Eric Bailly scored his first goal for Manchester United at the weekend to set in motion a 4-0 English Premier League triumph over Swansea.

The 23-year-old, part of the 2015 Africa Cup of Nations-winning team, moved to Old Trafford before the start of last season from Spanish outfit Villarreal.


Eric Bailly (Manchester United)

He knocked the ball into an empty net after Swansea goalkeeper Lukasz Fabianski had done well to tip Paul Pogba's header onto the bar. The goal at the end of the first half steadied United's nerves after a topsy turvy opening period.

Sadio Mane (Liverpool)

The Senegalese star's well-taken goal in the second half against Crystal Palace was the difference as Liverpool won 1-0 to put behind them their opening draw with Watford. With both Adam Lallana and Philippe Coutinho injured, more pressure will be on Mane to produce the goods up front, both creatively and in terms of goals.


Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (Borussia Dortmund)

The Gabon striker, last season's top scorer in the Bundesliga with 31 goals in 32 games, opened his account for the 2017/18 season by netting in Dortmund's 3-0 win at Wolfsburg. When Christian Pulisic's pass put him behind the Wolfsburg defence, Aubameyang tapped home the third and final goal.

Nabil Bentaleb (Schalke 04)

Algeria defensive midfielder Bentaleb converted a first-half penalty in Schalke's 2-0 home win over RB Leipzig to get the Royal Blues' season off to a flying start. Franco di Santo was fouled by Dayot Upamecano in the area and Bentaleb slotted home on 44 minutes for the lead.

Kevin-Prince Boateng (Eintracht Frankfurt)

The retired Ghana midfielder made his debut for Frankfurt, coming off the bench for the final 25 minutes of a goalless draw at Freiburg to cap a busy week for the 30-year-old. The half-brother of Bayern Munich's Jerome Boateng quit Spanish side Las Palmas on Wednesday, signed a three-year deal with Frankfurt on Friday and made his debut after just one training session.


Franck Kessie (Ac Milan)

Milan signed Kessie from Atalanta during the close season and the big Ivorian forward made his mark on his Rossoneri debut with a well-taken penalty to put the visitors ahead in the sixth minute. Milan went on to beat 10-man Crotone 3-0 to go joint top of Serie A alongside Inter and Juventus.


Bertrand Traore (Lyon)

Burkinabe forward Traore grabbed his first goal for Lyon since his close-season move from Chelsea. The 21-year-old, who Lyon paid 10 million euros for, scored a wonderful free-kick with 16 minutes remaining to put his new side 3-1 ahead against Bordeaux. Already reduced to 10 men, Lyon couldn't make the most of his strike, though, and slumped to a 3-3 draw.

Firmin Ndombe Mubele (Rennes)

The Democratic Republic of Congo international scored his first goals of the season with a brace against Dijon, although he couldn't prevent his side being held to a 2-2 draw. The 23-year-old from Kinshasa tapped in at the back post to open the scoring, before putting Rennes two goals to the good with a cross that looped into the far corner.

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