Elneny World Cup dreams are over
PARIS: Mohamed Salah continued to steal the limelight among Africans in Europe at the weekend, scoring a record-equalling goal and being voted Players’ Player of the Year.
The Liverpool and Egypt sharpshooter got his 31st English Premier League goal in a 2-2 draw at West Bromwich Albion before his goal-littered season was rewarded with the award. Another joyful weekend for Salah contrasted with that of fellow Egyptian Mohamed Elneny, who injured his ankle as Arsenal beat West Ham 4-1 and could miss the World Cup.
MOHAMED SALAH (Liverpool)
Salah was chosen as the Premier League Players’ Player of the Year on Sunday as reward for his 41 goals in all competitions in an incredible debut season at Anfield. He took his Premier League tally to 31 with Liverpool’s second in a draw at West Brom to equal the record for goals in a single 38-game season.
MOHAMED ELNENY (Arsenal)
Elneny faces a nervous wait to see if his World Cup dreams are over after being stretchered off in the first half of Arsenal’s win over West Ham. Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger admitted Elneny’s ankle injury “doesn’t look good” and he left the field with his shirt covering his face which was anguished in pain.
VICTOR MOSES (Chelsea)
The Nigeria wing-back will get the chance for FA Cup redemption after helping Chelsea reach the final with a 2-0 win over Southampton. Moses played all 90 minutes as the Blues eased into a final showdown with Manchester United on May 19. Goals from Olivier Giroud and Alvaro Morata killed off Southampton, leaving Moses dreaming of making amends for last season when he was sent off for two bookings as Chelsea lost 2-1 to Arsenal in the final.
YOUSSEF EN-NESYRI (Malaga)
The young Moroccan striker netted his team’s second goal in their 2-0 win over Real Sociedad. The victory was a case of too little, too late for Malaga, though, after their relegation was confirmed last week.
IMOH EZEKIEL/OGHENEKARO ETEBO (Las Palmas)
The Nigerian duo started for Las Palmas against Alaves but could not prevent the side from the Canary Island of Gran Canaria slumping to a 4-0 home defeat that condemned them to relegation with four games of the season remaining.
KALIDOU KOULIBALY (Napoli)
Senegal defender Koulibaly was the toast of Napoli fans after his 90th-minute header sealed a 1-0 win at Juventus and blew the Serie A championship open with four games to play. “It’s the most important goal of my life because winning here was an impossible mission,” he said after his fifth league goal. Koulibaly headed in the winner off a Jose Callejon corner in the final minute to give Napoli their first victory at the Allianz Stadium.
SIMY NWANKWO (Crotone)
Nigerian forward Simy grabbed the equaliser after seven minutes for his third goal in four games as Crotone battled back to a 2-1 victory at Udinese to shake up the relegation race. Crotone are two points above the drop zone with the win condemning Benevento to relegation.
FRANCK KESSIE (AC Milan)
Ivorian midfielder Kessie came closest to an equaliser on the hour mark when he rattled the crossbar in the San Siro, but AC Milan dropped out of the Europa League places into seventh after an embarrassing 1-0 defeat to rock-bottom Benevento, becoming the only team to fail to beat the southerners over two games this season.
NABY KEITA (RB Leipzig)
The Liverpool-bound Guinea midfielder hit his sixth league goal this season after a rare moment of luck in a 5-2 defeat at home to Hoffenheim. With his team 3-0 down and playing with 10 men after Emil Forsberg was sent off, Leipzig got a lucky break when Keita’s shot hit the post and went in off the goalkeeper. The defeat saw Leipzig slide to sixth in Germany’s top flight while Hoffenheim leap-frogged them into fifth.
SALOMON KALOU (Hertha Berlin)
The veteran Ivory Coast striker was in goal-providing form in a 3-0 win at 10-man Eintracht Frankfurt. Kalou helped unlock the Frankfurt defence and set up Australia international Mathew Leckie and Alexander Esswein for second-half goals. The result leaves Hertha ninth while Frankfurt are seventh.
MAXWEL CORNET (Lyon)
The Ivory Coast forward played his part in another big win for Lyon by coming off the bench to set up Burkina Faso star Bertrand Traore for one goal and then net another himself as OL beat Dijon 5-2 away in Ligue 1 to stay on course for Champions League qualification.
SEYDOU SY (Monaco)
Monaco were without both first-choice goalkeeper Danijel Subasic and his habitual back-up Diego Benaglio for their trip to Guingamp, so Sy came in for his second start of the campaign. The 22-year-old Senegal-born custodian could not prevent his side-who played most of the game with 10 men-from losing 3-1, a defeat that jeopardises their chances of Champions League qualification, even if they remain second in the table for now. – AFP