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Sports News of Friday, 11 September 2020

Source: goal.com

Jordan, Dede and other African players to watch this weekend

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang & Nicolas Pepe

Arsenal kick off the new Premier League campaign away at new boys Fulham looking to begin the new season with a victory at Craven Cottage.

Captain Aubameyang is surely going to start in West London, while Pepe’s level of involvement remains to be seen.

With the Gabon striker said to be on the verge of renewing for a further three years, the prolific frontman could give Gooners an indication of what’s to come for the new season and indeed for the next few years.

Bukayo Saka could play in some capacity for Mikel Arteta’s side while the quartet of Neeskens Kebano, new signing Mario Lemina and loan returnees Andre-Frank Zambo Anguissa and Jean-Michael Seri could all play for the home side on their return to the big time.

Sadio Mane, Mohamed Salah & Naby Keita

Fans of the Premier League couldn’t have wished for a better opening-day fixture for defending champions Liverpool with entertainment guaranteed when they host Leeds United on their long-awaited return to the top flight.

Salah and Mane are likely to play from the off, while Keita’s starting spot is uncertain against Marcelo Bielsa’s Leeds, who return after a 16-year absence.

Jurgen Klopp wouldn’t want his African triumvirate to show any generosity on the pitch as the Reds seek to continue their amazing record at Anfield where they haven’t lost in three full seasons.

A dominant victory for the Merseyside giants vs the Whites could lay down an early marker for 2020/21.

Wilfried Zaha & Jordan Ayew

Zaha and Ayew finished 2019/20 with a whimper as Crystal Palace picked up just one point from their final eight games.

They are expected to feature from the start when Southampton visit Selhurst Park on Saturday afternoon as the Eagles look to escape from last season’s slump that saw them end in 14th spot after they’d threatened to challenge for a spot in Europe.

Jeffrey Schlupp, who netted in their final day draw with Tottenham Hotspur, Cheikhou Kouyate and talented youngster Eberechi Eze might be involved for the home side, while Moussa Djenepo could return to the Saints side having sat out all the games post-lockdown.

Andre Ayew

Jordan’s elder brother Andre is unlikely to be left out of Swansea City’s opening fixture of the season away at Preston North End.

Having had their promotion hopes thwarted by Brentford in the playoffs last season, the Swans are one of the favourites to end anywhere in the top six this season.

However, last week’s unexpected EFL Cup exit by League Two side Newport County was discouraging, to say the least.

Ayew and his teammates will want to banish that disappointing 2-0 defeat to start their Championship campaign on a positive note.

Karl Toko Ekambi & Maxwel Cornet

The Lyon pair played reasonably well on their return to Ligue 1 with a 4-1 demolition of Dijon just before the international break.

Toko Ekambi and Cornet ought to keep their place in Rudi Garcia’s side on Friday night’s trip to unbeaten Bordeaux.

The Girondins are yet to concede a goal in 180 minutes of football and it remains to be seen if their rearguard remains watertight after gameweek three.

Nigeria striker Josh Maja has started both games for the home side and should play significant minutes against Les Gones, although the same can’t be said for compatriot Samuel Kalu, who has played only 27 minutes this term.

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