AFS Team of the Week 02.04.14
This edition of AFS Team of the Week presents a selection of players from across the continent, and plying their trade in different corners of the world.
Seven nationalities and seven different world leagues are featured in the latest XI of African stars.
Nigeria can boast of two representatives in the latest AFS selection, but will either of them actually be representing the Super Eagles at the 2014 World Cup?
Both Peter Odemwingie and Chinedu Obasi have spent extended time out of the national team during the reign of Stephen Keshi. The former fell out with the manager—very publicly—in early 2013, while the latter has endured a tough time with injuries.
However, a combination of Nigeria’s offensive deficiencies and an upturn in the domestic form of both Odemwingie and Obasi has led to extensive calls for their returns to the national side.
The Stoke City man continues to make his case and he is becoming a very divisive figure among Nigeria fans; if he continues performing as he did at the weekend (where he bagged the only goal of the game against Hull), it might be impossible for Keshi to ignore him.
As Schalke met Hertha Berlin at the weekend, Obasi not only scored, he also set-up team-mate Klaas-Jan Huntelaar, helping the Royal Blues to a convincing victory. Both Huntelaar and Julian Draxler have since praised Obasi to the media—can Keshi continue to leave such a talented and in-form player on the sidelines?
Up front, Odemwingie is joined by Wissam Ben Yedder, who’s becoming something of a regular in our team.
The Tunisian continued his excellent form with an assist against Ajaccio. In the last seven games he has now scored 5, set-up four and been named Man of the Match on two occasions.
World Cup-bound Algeria midfielder Mehdi Mostefa also scored in that game, for the Corsican side, and makes his debut in our AFS TOTW. His compatriot, Foued Kadir, on loan at Rennes from Marseille, also features. The midfielder was instrumental as his new club battered Bastia 3-0 and, in truth, will have been disappointed not to have made the score-sheet, having been denied on numerous occasions by Michael Landreau.
A third Algerian, Faouzi Ghoulam, regains his spot at left-back.
Finally, a mention for veteran South African stopper Moeneeb Josephs; the Bidvest Wits keeper delivered an inspired performance in Durban as his side, Bidvest Wits, secured a smash-and-grab victory against Golden Arrows. In keeping out the opposition forward, Josephs helped Wits to their eleventh clean sheet of the season.