AFS Team of the Week 13.02.14
In the third instalment of this exclusive series, Africa Football Shop’s Editor-in-Chief Ed Dove presents his Team of the Week.
The AFS Team of the Week aims to recognise the Best XI of African stars from the previous seven days of action. The feature celebrates the finest players from the continent and acknowledges their performances in the week that was.
There is a particularly Premier League feel to this week’s selection as a number of African talents starred in both the weekend and the mid-week fixtures. Three other major European leagues are represented and players from six different countries are featured.
Have we missed someone out? Is there anyone whose inclusion you just can’t fathom? Comment below and let us know…
Two clubs have contributed two players this week, with Tottenham Hotspur and Schalke 04 both being driven forward by African players.
Emmanuel Adebayor has continued his revival under Tim Sherwood with two match-winning performances. His goal, the only one of the game, helped Spurs beat Everton, their rivals in the race for the Champions League, in a tightly-fought contest at White Hart Lane. The home side managed to stay firm in the face of heavy onslaught from the Toffees, but while Everton were unable to find the net, it was the Togolese forward who won the points with an excellent second-half finish.
He was in fine fettle again in the mid-week fixture against Newcastle. Spurs not only managed to win at St. James’ Park, at ground at which they’ve endured mixed fortunes over the years, but a 4-0 victory has added weight and sincerity to Spurs’ push for the Top Four.
As well as bringing Adebayor back into the fold at White Hart Lane, Tim Sherwood also opted to promote Nabil Bentaleb from the youth team. The Algerian midfielder has been a revelation and has taken to the Premier League like a duck to water. Consecutive star performances this week have earned him a debut berth in the AFS Team of the Week.
Nigerian forward Chinedu Obasi continued his return to fitness for Schalke with 84 minutes in the 2-0 victory over Hannover. He was his team’s star man during this contest and, having played two games in February already, looks set for a strong end to the season.
His team-mate Joel Matip also earns a spot in the side, having looked impressive when faced with Hannover forward Mame Biram Diouf, who featured in the last Team of the Week. Matip was a composed and assured figure in the defence.
The Ghanaian pair of Emmanuel Agyemang-Badu and Abdul Majeed Waris both bagged goals in their sides victories, over Chievo and Nice respectively, while the Nigerian duo of Peter Odemwingie and Victor Anichebe continued their returns to relevance with important goals. In his last three games, ‘Big Vic’ has contributed win assist and two goals—both late equalisers against Liverpool and Chelsea.