Africans Abroad: Bukayo Saka marks a wonderful week, Musa Juwara stuns Inter

Saka & Iheanacho 'phenomenal' in Prem Week 33 (2:13)

Bukayo Saka and Kelechi Iheanacho topped Colin Udoh's charts in Premier League Week 33. (2:13)

Bukayo Saka rounded off a week he'll never forget with his first English Premier League goal as Arsenal defeated Wolverhampton Wanderers on Saturday, while Gambia's Musa Juwara announced himself to the watching world as Bologna downed Internazionale in Serie A on Sunday.

It's all change at Arsenal, where the doom and gloom that accompanied the Gunners' return to action following the lockdown has been replaced by an unfamiliar optimism.

They've won four on the bounce after consecutive defeats, and they boosted their European hopes by downing rivals Wolves 2-0 away on Saturday.

While the new contracts dished out to Pablo Mari, David Luiz and Cedric Soares were met with some measure of scepticism, the announcement on Wednesday that Saka had extended his deal by four years prompted celebration and no little relief!

Saka had been increasingly linked with a move to Borussia Dortmund, but the Anglo-Nigerian youngster finally committed his future to Arsenal, where he has the quality to be a key building block in Mikel Arteta's new-look side.

He followed up that new deal with his first Gunners goal on Saturday, calmly meeting Kieran Tierney's cross from the left with a deft, hooked finish that arced above Rui Patricio into the Wolves net.

"I know KT [Kieran Tierney], I know where he likes to cross it, I anticipated that the ball was going to come to the edge of the box so I made sure I was there," Saka told Sky Sports.

"When I got the ball, I knew at the far post was where the gaps were going to be and I just tried to guide it there. Luckily, it was a good finish and it went in."

The goal provided evidence of another string to Saka's bow, with him having already demonstrated his versatility by playing on both flanks, at left back, and even on the left side of a midfield three.

He's registered more assists than any other Arsenal player this term -- 11 across all competitions -- and he was quick to acknowledge how special the past few days had been.

"It's been a week that I will remember for my whole life," Saka said.

"It's been a great week, not just for me, but for the Arsenal fans.

"We're building, you can see the manager is building, we're really delighted with the results we're getting and that I could tie down my future here. It's been a great week."

Edward Nketiah led the line for the Gunners, with Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang on the left, and the latter was a lively presence even though he failed to score while his own future remains uncertain.

Adama Traore, meanwhile, struggled to ignite as Wolves' Champions League hopes faded as the Hispanic-Malian struggled to build a rapport with Raul Jimenez despite completing four dribbles throughout the contest.


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Leicester City striker Kelechi Iheanacho knows what it's like to be a young goalscoring sensation in the Premier League, having memorably averaged a goal every 94 minutes during his breakout season with Manchester City.

Iheanacho has since endured a few lean campaigns, but he took his tally for the 2019-20 season to five league goals -- his best return since that debut year at the Etihad Stadium -- when he netted against Crystal Palace on Saturday.

The Nigerian opened the scoring after 49 minutes against Palace and he now has goals in back-to-back matches, having not scored in his previous 12 matches, as Leicester City boosted their hopes of Champions League qualification.

Deployed alongside Jamie Vardy, Iheanacho reacted quickest to capitalise on Vicente Guaita's hesitation when Youri Tielemans sent a low cross in front of goal.

Brendan Rodgers has retained his faith in the Nigeria forward despite a limited output, but Iheanacho must now produce a sustained contribution during the run-inprove and prove that his latest goalscoring run is no mere purple patch -- he's had them before.

The East Midlanders can take a giant step towards the Champions League if they can hold off Saka's Arsenal at the Emirates Stadium on Tuesday.

Liverpool, looking to bounce back from their humiliation by Manchester City, had trouble breaking down Aston Villa as the relegation strugglers resisted Jugen Klopp's side for 71 minutes at Anfield on Sunday.

The Villains have had immense difficulty dealing with Mane in recent campaigns, however, and yet again they were undone by the Senegal superstar, who met a delightful through-ball from Naby Keita before slamming beyond Pepe Reina via the crossbar.

The attacker has now had a direct hand in eight goals in his past five league outings against the Midanders, and his latest strike takes him up to 16 league goals so far this season -- five behind Vardy at the top of the scoring charts.

"I think it's a lucky team for me, always I'm scoring [against them]," Mane told Sky Sports after the match.

"I'm happy about it, and hopefully they'll stay [up] and hopefully I can score more goals for the team and get more three points against them."


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The most remarkable African story of the weekend came at the San Siro, where Gambian duo Musa Juwara and Musa Barrow struck inside the final 16 minutes as Bologna came from behind to down Internazionale 2-1 on Sunday.

Gambia are one of the continent's minnows -- ranked No. 159 in the world -- but they're taken giant strides in recent qualifying campaigns, and now boast several players in Europe's major leagues.

Nonetheless, Juwara's rise to the top has been extraordinary: The 18-year-old was orphaned in his homeland and made the journey to Europe after the death of his grandfather -- who raised him following his parents' death -- crossing the Mediterranean on a boat before arriving in Sicily.

He signed for Bologna from Chievo Verona last year, and, after impressing in a brief cameo against Juventus, was handed 25 minutes as Bologna looked to turn the tide against Inter following Romelu Lukaku's opener.

Juwara equalised five minutes after going on, when he capitalised on a poor clearance from Roberto Gagliardini, before Barrow finished calmly beyond Samir Handanovic after being played in by Nicolas Dominguez.

"I really want to thank the coach for showing me that trust," Juwara said after the match, as per Reuters.

"I'm really happy to score my first goal, which I want to dedicate to my family and all those who have helped me on my journey.

"This is a dream for me and a day I'll remember for the rest of my life."