Mahrez ends goal drought with brace
Algerian Riyad Mahrez bagged a weekend brace to give the Leicester City a huge boost as they battle to avoid relegation from the English Premier League.
His early goals ended a four-month scoring drought, delivered a 2-0 home victory over seventh-place Southampton, and left the ‘Foxes’ three points above the drop zone.
Other African scorers in the Premier League included Nigerian Victor Anichebe for West Bromwich Albion and Senegalese Mame Biram Diouf for Stoke City.
RIYAD MAHREZ (Leicester City)
The Algeria playmaker’s double in a 2-0 win over Southampton could yet keep the Foxes in the Premier League. He scored twice in the first 19 minutes at the Midlands club’s King Power Stadium. The 24-year old opened the scoring with his first Leicester goal since December in the seventh minute with a low, long-range shot. And he made it 2-0 with a close-range effort that went in off the bar.
VICTOR ANICHEBE (West Bromwich Albion)
The Nigeria striker gave the Baggies a 32nd-minute lead at St James’ Park when poor defending left him free to head in Craig Gardner’s free-kick. But his goal was cancelled out before half-time by Ayoze Perez as Newcastle ended a damaging run of eight straight defeats.
WILFRIED BONY (Manchester City)
Coming off the bench in the 63rd minute, the Ivory Coast striker was a lively presence in his side’s 6-0 rout of Queens Park Rangers that condemned the London club to relegation. He had a low shot turned behind for a corner in the 69th minute that led to his flick being turned in by James Milner for City’s fifth goal. He also struck the post before his skilful back-heel set up David Silva for City’s sixth goal.
MAME BIRAM DIOUF (Stoke City)
Missed a couple of chances early on before his strength and pace proved too much for Tottenham Hotspur’s Vlad Chiriches, who was sent off for a second bookable offence when he brought down the Senegal striker. The forward completed the Potters’ convincing 3-0 home win when he tapped in Marko Arnautovic’s cross four minutes from time.
KALU UCHE (Levante)
Nigerian striker Uche scored his fifth goal since joining Levante in January as his club edged closer to survival with a 2-2 draw against La Liga champions Atletico Madrid. Uche bundled the ball home at the second attempt after his first effort was saved by Jan Oblak to put Levante 2-1 in front before Fernando Torres snatched a late point for Atletico.
YOUSSEF EL-ARABI (Granada)
Moroccan forward El-Arabi scored his third goal in two games as Granada’s great escape gathered momentum with a 2-0 win over already relegated Cordoba. El-Arabi converted from the penalty spot to take his tally for the season to seven.
NORDIN AMRABAT (Malaga)
Amrabat was instrumental as Malaga gave their chances of playing in the Europa League a huge boost with a 2-1 win at Almeria. The Moroccan’s shot was deflected into his own net by Jose Manuel Casado for the opener and Amrabat’s low cross was finished off by Javi Guerra 21 minutes from time to move Malaga to seventh.
THOMAS PARTEY (Almeria)
Ghanaian Partey headed the equaliser for Almeria after former Cameroon goalkeeper Carlos Kameni flapped at a free-kick.
MOHAMED SALAH (Fiorentina)
Salah, on loan from Chelsea, scored in the 57th minute as Fiorentina defeated Empoli 3-2. Salah bamboozled defenders Vincent Laurini and Daniele Rugani with a mazy dribble before calmy shooting low past ‘keeper Luigi Sepe.
ALFRED DUNCAN (Sampdoria)
Ghanaian midfielder Duncan scored his first goal for Sampdoria in the last minute of a 4-1 win at Udinese.
FRANCOIS KAMANO (Bastia)
In a team fighting relegation, the young Guinea striker struggled as he faced Paul-Georges Ntep. The Rennes high-flying winger caused Kamano a lot of trouble with his pace and skills. So much so that the Bastia forward upended him twice in the span of just seven minutes in the first half and was sent off before half-time after a second yellow card. Despite being down to 10 men, Bastia managed an important 1-0 win.
ANDRE AYEW (Marseille)
Trailing Monaco, Marseille seemed set for their fifth defeat in six games and on their way to another season without European football. But, with just 10 minutes to go, Ghana’s Andre Ayew headed his ninth goal of the season before Romain Alessandrini stole a 2-1 win for Marcelo Bielsa’s side.
JORDAN AYEW (Lorient)
After a rough time with his boyhood club Marseille, the Ghana forward seems to have settled in Lorient. Jordan Ayew bagged his third goal in as many matches, and his 12th of the season, as he put the nail in the coffin of a 4-0 drubbing that relegated Metz. Algeria midfielder Mehdi Mostefa also got on the scoresheet.
DAVID NGOG (Reims)
The former Liverpool, Bolton and Swansea flop came back to France looking for the kind of form that earned him a Premier League move. In a side like Ligue 1 strugglers Reims, he has had little opportunity to shine. But, against Evian, in an important 4-2 win in the fight against relegation, the 26-year old striker grabbed his first brace of the season, taking his tally to seven goals in 26 games.
IBRAHIMA TRAORE (Borussia Moenchengladbach)
The Guinea forward claimed his second goal in two games from the bench with a superb late effort in Borussia Moenchengladbach’s 3-0 win over Bayer Leverkusen. The 27-year-old super-sub winger dribbled to the edge of the area then blasted his shot into the top left-hand corner on 88 minutes to claim Gladbach’s third just six minutes after coming on.