ROUND-UP: Africans in Serie A – Week 3
Almost all the African players who featured for their various national teams during the international break returned to action over the weekend in the Italian Serie A.
Afriyie Acquah came back with a bang, Agyemang Badu returned from injury to feature for Udinese as Babacar’s goal secured all three points for Fioretina.
Here’s a wrap on how African players performed in Serie A after match day three by Stak Sottie.
Assane Diousse’s Empoli allowed Napoli to fight back twice to deny them all the three points at home as they drew 2-2 in a thrilling encounter on Saturday at Stadio Carlo Castellani. Diousse’s contribution in the game was immense as he played full throttle. Algeria’s Faouzi Ghoulam was a bench warmer for Napoli.
Khouma Babacar got the only goal as 10-man Fiorentina beat Genoa at the Stadio Artemio Franchi on Saturday. Babacar broke the deadlock on the hour-mark after nodding home Valero’s cross to hand the Viola their second victory at home this season. He was replaced by Mario Suarez five minutes later. Babacar’s national team mate, Issa Cissokho played 90 minutes for Genoa in the same game.
18-year-old Ivorian Assane Gnoukouri who made his Serie A debut for Internazionale against Hallas Verona last season will have to wait to have a feel of the Derby della Madonnina as he sat on the bench over the weekend. His Inter side peeped AC Milan by a goal to nil at the Stadio Giuseppe Meazza, after Guarin unleashed an unstoppable strike from 20 meters that flew into the near bottom corner of the Rossoneri’s goal.
Mohammed Salah came off the bench on the 70th minute and was unlucky with an assist which Alessandro Florenzi failed to convert. Yao Gervinho played a major role with his skillful cut-in runs from both flanks as he managed 90 minutes of action over the weekend. Mali’s Seydou Keita again was amazing in the midfield this weekend for AS Roma but also failed to make the most of a free header from a Daniele De Rossi cross at the Stadio Comunale Matusa.
Afriyie Acquah’s 73rd minute effort from the edge of the box squirmed into the near bottom corner of Verona’s goal to salvage a point at the Stadio Marc’Antonio Bentegodi, after coming off the bench to replace Nigeria’s Joel Obi on the 50th minute mark in the second half.