Showing posts with label Football fans connect. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Football fans connect. Show all posts

Wednesday, 28 May 2014

Super Eagles Intensify training ahead of Brasil 2014 World Cup

Super Eagles boss, Stephen Keshi, his assistants Dan Amokachi, Hyauon-donou Valere and Ike Shorunmu on Monday evening took the team through a rigorous training session that was adjudged needful by most of the players.

Assistant Captain, Vincent Enyeama, said the team need such a regime because some of the players have been off action for up to a week and need re-awakening. “You don’t play the World Cup every year and time”, he said of the session that lasted from 7:10 to 9:20pm.

Monday, 17 March 2014

Odemwingie apologises to Keshi after long fall out with the Eagles coach

Odemwingie peter
There are very strong indications that out-of-favour Super Eagles player, Osaze Odemwingie may likely re-join the Stephen Keshi-led Eagles in their remaining friendly games before they hit Brazil for the World Cup in June.

Strong-headed Osaze was  left out of the Eagles in 2012 when he took offence for being substituted  after a very poor outing in a Nations Cup match in Rwanda. When Keshi wanted to recall him he expressed misgiving about his substitution and Keshi felt that he was not yet ready to play for Nigeria and give his all. Keshi looked away.

Osaze  took to Twitter to ease his frustration, blasting Keshi and the Eagles crew for what he reasoned was

wrong. But we gathered that he may have pleaded Mea cupa and Keshi is also set to welcome him back by inviting him to the team as soon as possible.

A very dependable source informed us that Osaze who appears  in form in his new club, Stoke City has apologised to the Eagles coach and told him to forgive him of his tantrums.

“Keshi is human and was touched by the change of heart of Osaze in asking for forgiveness. He(Keshi) wants the best for the Super Eagles. Since Osaze is doing well in his club and has shown remorse, he will soon open the doors for the ‘’prodigal son’’, our source said.

The Super Eagles would be glad to welcome Osaze who hit a brace against West Ham at the weekend as his club won 3-1.

While Osaze’s come-back remains a cheery news, our source was silent on the fate of Villarreal hotshot, Ike Uche whose chances of coming back to Eagles after his last outing in the African Cup of Nations win in South Africa are still unclear. Keshi had frowned that Ike Uche lacked  tactical discipline,  an accusation that shocked both player and keen watchers of football.(VANGUARD)

Wenger: Arsenal's Title will be Won or Lost at Stamford Bridge

Arsene Wenger believes that their title challenge hinges on their game against Chelsea next week at Stamford Bridge.

The Frenchman will lead the Gunners onto the field in what will be his 1000th game in charge of the north London club.

The 64-year-old has won three Premier League trophies with the Gunners and is looking for his fourth success  after nine years without a trophy. Their 1-0 win over Tottenham at White Hart Lane has opened up the title race yet again after Chelsea lost to Aston Villa at Villa park on Saturday.

The Gunners took a different route to how their supporters are accustomed to, digging the game out amid a barrage of attacking threat from the home side.

However, Arsenal stuck to their task and rode on the back of a wonder strike from Tomas Rosicky in the 1st minute and defended doggedly with Per Mertesacker and Laurent Koscielny refusing their arch rivals any space through the middle.

A win at Stamford Bridge, Mourinho's first ever in charge of Chelsea at home, will take the Gunners one point within Chelsea, having played a game less.

"It gets us a bit closer to Chelsea and makes the game next week even more interesting. We are now back to four points, we have a game in hand and we have played two away games on the trot because Swansea was postponed so we have five games at home. We'll see, it makes the next game a very big one," Wenger told www.arsenal.com.

"The next game will have a vital importance. I believe as well we came out of three games, Everton, Bayern and today where mentally every time you have to be absolutely focused. That's where I think our defenders have done extremely well because there is no ordinary moment in a game like that and they managed to keep their focus up completely for 90 minutes in every single game," he concluded. (ibtimes, UK)

Barcelona scout for Liverpool managaer Brendan Rodgers to take over from Tata Martino

Barcelona are scouting Liverpool managaer Brendan Rodgers to take over at Nou Camp come the end of the season, according to the Sunday People.

New manager Tata Martino has failed to live up to expectations this season and the Catalans are looking at other options from across Europe to take over before the start of the upcoming season. Rodgers has done a brilliant job at Liverpool since his arrival from Swansea last season and his style of play is completely suited to the expansive style being deployed by Barcelona over the years.

His use of quick strikers by the likes of Luis Suarez and Daniel Sturridge ahead of fleet footed playmakers in the mould of Philippe Coutinho and Jordan Henderson has been an asset for Liverpool this season, who are gunning for the title after two decades.

The northern Irishman's contract with the Reds ends in 2015 but the former Swansea man is confident of staying and has insisted that there will be a lot of time for them to discuss this after the season ends in May.

"I am happy here. It is an incredible club – I love being the manager here," Rodgers said.

"I haven't got an agent so I don't have someone pumping stories out there about me not being happy. There will be plenty of time, come the end of the season, to sit down and talk about a new deal," he added.

 Meanwhile, the shift of power has never tasted so good for Liverpool after their smashed Manchester United 3-0 at Old Trafford to keep their title hopes alive. The Reds rode on the back of two penalties from Steven Gerrard before Luis Suarez put the final nail in the coffin for David Moyes' side, in front of a crowd which has never seen such humiliation in over two decades.

The scoreline flattered the hosts, who could have been five down if Gerrard had scored his penalty and referee Mark Clattenburg had given the Reds another penalty for Michael Carrick's tackle on Daniel Sturridge in the box. Rodgers, who was in the heart of Liverpool's resurgence from seventh to the top will have to choose his options properly before signing a new deal. (http://www.ibtimes.co.uk/)

Monday, 16 September 2013

Confed Cup:Eyimba wins 68th Edition on shoot out

Enyimba International of Aba yesterday won the 68th edition of the Federation Cup final held at the Teslim Balogun Stadium.
It was a dramatic final, full of suspense and action. Warri Wolves led twice but Enyimba came back twice and eventually won the deciding penalty shoot-out 5-4.
It was a game that Enyimba showed a lot of experience and character. It was not only the football on the pitch that was exciting. The side attraction of the fans was exceptional, entertaining and engaging. It enlivened the stadium and made the final a  memorable and classy one.  The fans were exceptional. They were indeed a great attraction in the game but Enyimba fans silenced their Warri counterparts in terms of drumming up support for their team. They were a class apart.
Najeme Musa scored the opener for Wolves in the 22nd minute and in the 62nd minute, Enyimba equalised through Bright Efiome, who was clearly the man of the match. He was a right full back, who attacked well and did everything right. His game should earn him an Eagles call-up.
Osadieye Joseph put Wolves ahead again in the 78th minute and the Warri fans started singing, thinking that the cup would go to Warri. They thought history was about to be made. It was only in the late 1960s that a team from Warri got to the final of the FA Cup.
Governor Emmanuel Uduaghan was to reward the players handsomely.  FA Chairman Amaju Pinnick had promised N1m per goal. Clement Temile, a 1984 Nations Cup golden boot winner, who now lives in Europe, was around on Saturday to give the players motivational talk and told them that all the great football they played in the past never got them this far and that it was their time to make a change.
And it appeared Wolves were coasting home but all the dream was put on hold by the 83rd minute stunning equaliser by Ugwu Nwadiegwu, which was a free kick. 
It gave life to Enyimba again and the game ended 2-2. In the resultant penalty shootout, Azubuike Egwueke, an Eagles player, who is captain of Warri Wolves and who on Saturday had promised to lift the cup, was unfortunately the only person who lost his kick and that ended Wolves chase for a diadem.
Meanwhile, Delta State Governor, Emmanuel Uduaghan has congratulated Enyimba for their defeat. While hailing Enyimba’s fighting spirit, Uduaghan also commended Warri Wolves for their performance.

Uduaghan added that “ in Delta we win most  and loose some. Congrats to both finalists”.

Friday, 13 September 2013

KAKA to make first debut for AC Milan this Saturday


MILAN  (AFP) – Brazilian forward Kaka will make his debut for AC Milan Saturday when the Rossoneri visit Torino hoping to make amends after losing their first game of the season.
Kaka spent six highly successful seasons with Milan from 2003-2009, winning the Champions League and Ballon d’Or trophy for the world’s best player before signing for Real Madrid.
Kaka
But, unsettled at the Santiago Bernabeu and with one eye on next year’s World Cup, he returned to the San Siro amid much fanfare two weeks ago, when he signed a two-year deal following a free transfer from Real.
Despite lacking full match fitness, Milan coach Massimiliano Allegri confirmed that Kaka can’t wait to take to the field in what should be an emotional return for the 31-year-old.
“Kaka is in good shape physically and has trained well and enthusiastically,” said Allegri Friday.
“I think he’ll be a bit emotional ahead of his debut tomorrow and that’s normal as he’s lacking a bit of match fitness. That will come with time.”
Milan are the only expected title contenders in Serie A to have dropped points in their opening two league games, following an opening day reverse away to promoted Verona.
Napoli sit top ahead of Inter on goal difference, while Roma, Fiorentina and Juventus also have six points each.
With Milan hosting Celtic Wednesday in their first Champions League group match of the season, Allegri hinted that he may rest Mario Balotelli and give Alessandro Matri, recently signed from Juventus, a run out.
“I have to think about the starting line-up, whether it’s Balotelli, or Matri or one of the others,” said the Italian.
“Robinho is ready and he’s on good form. He’s scoring too. We’re in good shape up front. I just have to choose who’ll start.”

Monday, 9 September 2013

Why I left Everton- Victor Anichebe

Victor-Anichebe
Victor-Anichebe
Super Eagles striker Victor Anichebe has opened up on why he left his childhood club Everton for West Brom in one of the deadline day transfer moves in the recently closed summer transfer window.
The 25-year-old, who replaced his compatriot, Osaze Odemwingie at West Brom for a fee that could rise to £6 million, revealed that his former coach’s (David Moyes) decision to leave Everton for Manchester United contributed to his move away from Goodison Park.
“David Moyes has been such a help for me. He has been like a father figure,” Anichebe was quoted as saying on Sky sports.
“Everton is changing and the club is going in a different direction. They have got a new manager in there now, with new philosophies. I was sad to see David Moyes go but that happens and you have to move on. I felt after a good latter stage of the season, maybe I should go somewhere else for a fresh start,” the Nigeria international added.

Anichebe’s final appearance for Everton was as a substitute appearance against Norwich on the opening day of the season, he made over 100 appearances for the Toffees following his debut in 2006.

Friday, 6 September 2013

NFA PARTNERING WITH GOOGLE, LAUNCH ONLINE ACTIVITIES FOR EAGLES

SUPER EAGLES AT A TRAINING SECTION
Abuja –  The Nigeria Football Association (NFA) says it is partnering with  popular search engine, Google for online activities for the senior national team, the Super Eagles.
This is contained in a statement issued by the NFA Media Officer, Ademola Olajire, in Abuja on Thursday.
The statement stated that the Chairman of the Marketing Committee, Mr Deji Tinubu, said that the project was already making impact.
“The Super Eagles are now active on the social media and have official presence on Google and YouTube.
“Fans can follow them on www.google.com/+SuperEagles and www.youtube.com/NigeriaSuperEagles, for exclusive updates,’’ Tinubu said.
Tinubu said the project would serve as publicity platform for the team’s international players.
“Launching of a landing page on Google+, which is also connected to YouTube Channel, will in the medium and long term serve as a principal publicity platform for our international players.
“The platform is really meant for our players in the Super Eagles and other National Teams to follow their supporters on their feelings and comments.

“It will also help with the media campaign at major championships,’’ he said. (NAN)

Wednesday, 4 September 2013

I missed Football-Osaze Odemwingie confesses ahead Super Eagles Clash in Calabar

Osaze Odemwingie
Osaze Odemwingie
Just as Eagles troop in for Malawi encounter this Saturday in Calabar, Osaze Odemwingie has confessed that he missed football following a long layoff. The estranged Eagles attacker said he was eager to prove his worth to Cardiff after signing from West Bromwich Albion . The 32-year-old Nigeria international became surplus to requirements at the Hawthorns after the striker's infamous drive to London in a bid to engineer a move to Queens Park Rangers at the end of the January transfer window. "I missed football and I am delighted to come to a fast-progressing team," he told Cardiff City Player. "They have a young manager with a lot of ambition. He has done really well in a short period and I hope to help the team become better and I am grateful for the confidence they have shown in me. "I am very motivated and ready for action. The last six months, coming on as a substitute for 10-15 minutes, was not what made me happy and I am a better player when I am happy. I am very hungry and I will show the same attitude I had when Iwas scoring a lot of goals in games in the Premier League." Odemwingie will use the international break to get acquainted with his team-mates before their Premier League trip to face Hull City on Saturday week. Odemwingie's Eagles teammates will play Malawi as he continues his absence from the team. The attackerhas not featured for Nigeria since last year. His layoff from the game was all round as he neither played for country nor club for the period. His statements from hisTwitterhandle separated him and the Nigeria coach Keshi just as uncomplimentary tweets knocked him off finally from his Hawthorns base.

Thursday, 29 August 2013

VICTOR MOSES DROPED FROM CHELSEA SQUAD AHEAD OF SUPER CUP CLASH AGAINST BAYERN

Victor Moses(pictured Right)
Victor Moses(pictured Right) 

Uncertainty appears to be the word for Victor Moses at Stamford Bridge as the season begins to take definite swing. The Mail reported that the Nigerian has been left out of Chelsea’s squad for their Super Cup clash against Bayern Munich in Prague on Friday, raising further doubts over his future at the Bridge under Jose Mourinho.

Moses has been linked with moves to Liverpool and West Ham after failing to make an appearance for Chelsea in their opening three Premier League games. The Super Eagles attacker joined the Stamford Bridge club from Wigan last August for £9m.

But it is a better deal for his compatriot Mikel Obi as the midfielder is in the team to face the German champions. Even though there are also several transfer links to Mikel, he was a late substitute in the Monday big clash at Old Trafford against Manchester United.

Liverpool boss Brendan Rodgers wants Moses on a season-long loan at Liverpool and has been encouraged after the player was told he can leave the club. The situation at Chelsea is surely a new turn for Moses after the initial praise he got from Mourinho during a pre-season tour of the USA.

He said, “Victor (Moses) has been terrific. He is another one who is working very hard. He hasn’t missed a single minute of a training session.

“I think Victor is a very good option for us. In Victor’s position we have Hazard, (Kevin) De Bruyne, Schurrle – it’s a position where a coach can make a change during a match and give new life and fresh blood to the team. He is a player who makes the squad stronger and gives us options.”

Chelsea want a £2m loan fee for the 22-year-old, but Liverpool will try to secure his release on reduced terms. Moses earns £55,000 a week at Chelsea and Liverpool are reluctant to match that.

But they are still hopeful of a deal as Moses prepares to leave Chelsea before the transfer deadline on Monday.

English Premier league experts say Rodgers is counting on his long-standing relationship with Mourinho to help steer the deal in Liverpool’s direction this week.

Moses has been told that Chelsea are unlikely to agree to his sale, but they will let the winger leave for a season.

The chances of Moses winning back his place in the Chelsea team have been reduced by the £32m arrival of Willian from Anzhi Makhachkala.

MIKEL IS GOING NO WHERE- JOHN SHITU


Midfielder John Mikel Obi will not be leaving Chelsea, at least not during this transfer window, according to his agent John Shittu.

Mikel, 26, has been heavily linked with Turkish club Galatasaray throughout the summer, with Russian club Anzhi Makhachkala and Italian side Napoli also emerging as late entrants for his services.

But Shittu told KickOffNigeria.com on Wednesday that the Nigerian is going nowhere.

“He loves this club, the manager knows him and likes him and he will not be going anywhere during this transfer window,” he insists.

Shittu admits that there had been interest in the player, but all suitors have been rebuffed by Chelsea and he denies that it was ever a question of the club’s valuation not being met.

“Some clubs came in and expressed their interest but that is where it stopped. They were never allowed to get to the point where we could even begin to start talking about valuation or negotiation.”

Mikel has barely featured for the Blues this season, his only appearance being a cameo role in the last few minutes of Chelsea’s 0-0 draw against Manchester United.

Shittu explains that it is down to match fitness.

“He did not a proper pre-season because he got a couple of weeks extra due to his Confederations Cup participation and then an injury so he is not fully match fit.

“When he starts playing is down to the manager, but as soon as he gets his match fitness back, he will be in contention.”

With Shittu being so categorical about the midfielder not leaving this window, there is the suggestion that he could perhaps leave in January.

“We cannot say what will happen in the future. This is football and anything is possible. But for now, he is a Chelsea player, and is happy to remain a Chelsea player for the rest of his career.”

KESHI AWAITS VERDICT,HAS FIFA RECIEVED RACISM COMPLAINT



Nigeria National Team,Super Eagles in Training Session
Nigeria National Team,Super Eagles in Training Session
World Football governing Body,FIFA Said it has received a complaint of racism against Nigeria coach Stephen Keshi after he said a rival,Tom Saintfiet,Coach of Malawi was ‘’a white dude’’ who didn’t know about Africa and should go back to his native Belgium.

FIFA declined to comment further and only said Wednesday it had received the complaint against Keshi, who led Nigeria to this year’s African Cup title.

Malawi coach Tom Saintfiet said the Football Association of Malawi reported Keshi for comments apparently made on an African TV show, where Keshi said Saintfiet was ‘’crazy’’ and ‘’mad’’ for suggesting the Nigerian city of Calabar was unsafe for a World Cup qualifier between the countries.

Keshi went on to say the Belgian ‘’is not an African person, he is a white dude. He should go back to Belgium.’’

Tuesday, 27 August 2013

Jose Mourinho rain Praises on Bayern ahead of Super Cup Clash

BERLIN (AFP) – Chelsea boss Jose Mourinho has praised treble-winning Bayern Munich ahead of Friday’s UEFA Super Cup clash and said he wants to measure his side against the European champions. Bayern became the first German team to win the treble of league, cup and Champions League titles last season under previous coachJupp Heynckes, winning the Bundesliga by 25 points while breaking or equalling 25 league records. Chelsea, who won last season’s Europa Leaguetitle, square off against Pep Guardiola-coachedBayern at Prague’s Eden Arena stadium and the 50-year-old Mourinho was full of praise for the Bavarians’ achievements. “With Bayern, what impresses me was always the difficulty of achieving a treble and only great teams with a great mentality and fantastic football qualities manage it,” Mourinho, who is back at Stamford Bridge afterthree years coaching Real Madrid, told UEFA.com. “To keep that level and that ambition in all three competitions was fantastic, it was remarkable, it was unbelievable work by Mr Heynckes. “Of course I was impressed by the way they performed all last season.” The Prague showdown will see former Real boss Mourinho continue his rivalry with ex-Barcelona coach Guardiola, who took charge of Bayern in June after winning 14 titles in four years at the Camp Nou between 2008 and 2012. With the group stages of this season’s Champions League to be drawn on Thursday, Mourinho said he is looking forward to seeing how his side measure up against Bayern, 24 hours after they discover their European opponents. “To play against the best team in the world in the last year is a big challenge for us,” said Mourinho after Chelsea beat Bayern in Munich in the 2012 Champions League final. “It is good for us to measure where we are in terms of playing against the best, because on that day we will know (our draw for) the group phase of the Champions League and it’s a big target for us to go through the group phase.” Chelsea are top of England’s Premier League with seven points from their first three games after drawing with Manchester United on Monday while Bayern are at Freiburg on Tuesday in the Bundesliga. They trail Borussia Dortmund and Bayer Leverkusen only on goal difference with all three clubs having won their opening trio of fixtures.

Saturday, 24 August 2013

Mikel Obi the Controversy and battle to remain relevant in Chelsea and Super Eagles

No Nigerian player has had as much controversy in his playing roles as Mikel Obi.The former Plateau United player started outas an attacking midfielder before Jose Mourinho converted him to a defensive midfielder at Chelsea with the hope of replicating Claude Makelele in the position. It was not an easy role for the then 19-year-old who moved to the Stamford Bridge from Lyn Oslo after a transfer tussle with Manchester United. He had been one of the brightest stars at theFIFA U-20 World Cup in 2005, second only toLionel Messi of Argentina and rated well above Sergio Aguero and Cesc Fabregas. He was naturally fitted for the attacking midfield role. But Mourinho put Mikel to use as much as hecould in the midfield. Back then, Chelsea's main asset in the game was its midfield. They had the likes of Michael Ballack, Michael Essien, Frank Lampard and Mikel, who all used to play together in the centre of the pitch. Today, Chelsea's strength is their unmatchable attack that accommodates the likes of Eden Hazard, Oscar and Juan Mata. With this kind of attack-minded play, there is not as much room for a normal midfielder to express himself in the game. This has meant he has been restricted in a Chelsea shirt in recent times. The world saw a bit of the old Mikel at the FIFA Confederations Cup in Brazil, where he pushed forward in his attacking midfield rolefor Nigeria to score his fourth international goal against Uruguay. Since Mourinho's departure from Chelsea in 2007, Mikel's position in the team had been secured, but the return of the Portuguese to Stamford Bridge after sojourns at Inter Milanand Real Madrid meant a new philosophy forthe London club. Mourinho has not come out to say Mikel is surplus to requirement but his body language is loud enough to inform anyone that his new game plan with Chelsea has little need for a relatively passive role in the squad. Apparently some clubs have seen how unimportant the Nigerian will be to Mourinho in his second coming hence the numerous transfer links to Monaco, Galatasaray, Trabzonspor and recently Napoli. Mikel reportedly said in June that he was ready to move to Galatasaray but he later denied making such statement. New Napoli manager, Rafa Benitez, who onlyrecently led Chelsea to glory in the UEFA Europa League, wants the player in Italy as he bids to strengthen his squad. But Mikel has been adamant, insisting he has a future with the London club. "He should just take the opportunity and go to Napoli. What else does he want? He has won everything there is in club football except Club World Cup and the FIFA World Cup," former Super Eagles captain and a former coach of the Golden Eaglets, Henry Nwosu, said. "Mikel is one of the pillars of the Super Eagles so he cannot afford to be on the bench at Chelsea. That will not convince coach Stephen Keshi about his quality. It willnot sound fine to have one of Nigeria's finestregularly warming the bench at Chelsea. "I can understand if he rejects offers from Turkish clubs, but Napoli is a big club managed by a top coach. The Italian league is among the best in the world, so what is hisconfusion all about? If he insists on staying at Chelsea, Mourinho may likely never include him in the first team again." Mikel is one of the very few left in the squad that have lifted the major trophies with Chelsea since 2006 and at one time had more appearances than Salomon Kalou, Deco or even Didier Drogba. "Mikel needs a new challenge away from Chelsea. In my opinion, he is one of the best players in the world, but to be at his best, hemust be in a team where he is free to express himself," former Nigeria midfielder Etim Esin said. "It is hard for a player to say he is moving onafter spending over seven years at a club, especially in London. Moving to a new place is a different challenge on its own, but if he wants his career to remain on the high end, he should move to Napoli and allow Benitez to work on him. Perhaps he's thinking he can win more laurels under Mourinho, but the question is: will Mourinho feature him in the crucial games?" Another former Nigeria international, Taribo West, however, disagreed with those calling for Mikel's move away from Chelsea. He wants the player to fight for his place just like every other player in the club. Taribo said, "Mourinho is a professional who knows exactly what he wants. If Mikel proveshimself to be worthy of a role, he will get it. He has to remain at Chelsea and fight for hisplace if he must be relevant even in the Super Eagles. "If he leaves, someone will still have to play that role, so why not him. "As a vital member of the Super Eagles, there is the need for him to play at a top club. All the clubs linked to him are smaller than Chelsea. If he must move, it must be to Real Madrid, Barcelona, Manchester United or AC Milan." Chelsea have played two games in the new Premier League season and Mikel has yet to play any role in the campaign. With the transfer window expected to close on September 2, it remains to be seen if Mikel will eventually go to the highest bidder.

Friday, 23 August 2013

Malawi Coach Saintfeit Says Stephen Keshi Is a Racist

The mind games between Coach Stephen Keshiand his Malawian counterpart, Tom Saintfeit ahead of the World Cup qualifier between the Super Eagles and the Flames of Malawi, took a new dimension yesterday when Saintfeit accused Keshi of racism. Saintfiet argued that Keshi by calling him a ‘’White dude”, has made racial remarks, which the world soccer governing body frowns at. TheBelgian-born coach claims to have instructed his lawyers to make a formal complaint to FIFA. He was employed by Malawi Football Association in their desperate bid to turn the tide against Nigeria in the group E World Cup qualification table. Saintfiet was employed by the Nigeria Football Federation as technical director, but his coming to Nigeria was scuttled by Sports Minister, Bolaji Abdullahi and he seesvictory against Nigeria as a sweet revenge for him. “It is unacceptable that any person says these words – it is clear racism. It is 100% sure that my lawyers will lodge a complaint with Fifa,” Saintfiet told BBC Keshi who was reacting to Saintfiet’s call for theSeptember 7 match to be moved from Calabar, because of fear of terror attacks, was quoted as saying on Vox Africa Sports360: “If he wants to talk to Fifa, he should go back toBelgium. He is not an African person, he is a white dude, he should go back to Belgium. “I have never used any words like these to any coach. He has no right, who is he? “All other countries play in Calabar. Calabar is one of the safest places in Nigeria… He is mad. I wish I could say it to his face.” Belgian Saintfiet told local media at the time that he was concerned about security because he claims “the UK’s Foreign & Commonwealth Office says it is a no-travel area”. “Keshi’s words create hate and aggression, and creates a risk ahead of the match in Calabar,” Saintfiet added. “These comments are unacceptable and I am very sad about them. “I will not say any bad words about Mr Keshi, nor Nigeria – I only spoke about moving the game. “If Fifa takes racism seriously, then you have totake it seriously in both directions. If a European said something of this nature about an African, you would have a huge problem. “I am against racism in all directions.” Keshi said yesterday that he viewed all the noise been made by Saintfiet as a distraction, adding that he will do all his talking in the pitch. But media officer of the Super Eagles, Ben Alaiya dismissed the accusations. “Keshi is not a racist. How can he be when he played most of his football in Europe particulary Belgium where he was captain of Anderlecht, he was also captain of Cheleroi. “Saintfient is just playing mind games, becausehe knows that the Eagles will beat Malawi anytime and anywhere.”

Tuesday, 20 August 2013

Serbian Giant,Red Star launches bid for Sunday Mba

The dust on the transfer of Super Eagles midfielder, Sunday Mba, could settle this week as Serbian giant Red Star Belgrade has reportedly indicated interest in the player. According to influential Serbian sports website, sportal.rs, Red Star is in the marketfor reinforcement in midfield and is focusingon Mba and his Eagles mate Fegor Ogude ofNorways Valerenga Oslo. National Mirrorlearnt that the Sports Director of Red Star, Zoran Stojadinovic, hopes to sign of one of the Nigerian duo. Mba, 24, was linked with FC Karpaty (Ukraine) and Romania side CFR Cluj after the AFCON 2013 finals but the ownership tussle between Enugu Rangers and Warri Wolves stopped further moves. He also attracted interests from clubs in Turkey and Russia Red Star, who recently signed another Nigerian Ifeanyi Onyilo last week, had only last month launched a bid of200,000 euros for another Nigeria international Azubuike Egwuekwe. But it was well short of the center backs valuation of around 350,000 euros, as WarriWolves turned down their proposal. Red Star also has another Nigerian Abiola Daudain its employ.

Nigeria Football league made history,gets Supersport Jackpot money

The Nigeria Professional Football League has signed a historic four-year television deal with Supersport worth about $34 million. According to Chairman of the League Management Company, Hon. NdukaIrabor, the deal will kick off from 2015. Even though the amount is a far cry from what we need it would go a long way in changing the league, Irabor disclosed yesterday in Abuja. Nigerians will have the pleasure of watchingsix matches a week and I think we can only look to happy days ahead. This contract hasalso seen Supersport assuring that Nigerians who are working with them will have their jobs secured at least till 2019. Its also important to know that for every year beginning from this year, they have agreed to give us $2m per year beginning from the season meaning we will be having more money in the league. The 20-team NPFL has been perennially hampered by lack of sponsors.

Uproar as Arsenal Supporters Trust (AST) Gets Obsessed with Arsene Wengers Continued failure to win medals in 8 years


The Arsenal Supporters’ Trust (AST) fear that Arsene Wenger’s “obsession” with developing young players is damaging the club’s chances of winning silverware, insisting the manager shouldn’t be offered a new contract as the north London club boss. Presently the longest-serving Premier League manager, the former Monaco of France tactician joined the Gunners from Nagoya Grampus Eight- the club they won 3-1 in their recent pre-season trip to Japan- in 1996. Wenger’s deal expires at the end of the season and having failed to win a trophy in the past eight years, the Frenchman is up against the wrath of the fans that have ceased every opportunity to question his ambition to win trophies in recent years. Arsenal have not spent a penny in the transfer market and lost 3-1 at home to Aston Villa on the opening day of the league season. Fans want the club to invest on top class players and the AST have disclosed that contract talks with the 63-year-old should be placed on hold. “Chief executive Ivan Gazidis has spoken of the intent to offer Wenger a new contract. We (AST) believe this is inappropriate,” reads an AST statement. “There remain important questions about the way player identification, recruitment and remuneration processes are managed at Arsenal. “The failing we highlighted in Arsene Wenger holding too much power have only been amplified in recent weeks. These must be addressed as a matter of urgency.” Arsenal have been linked with several players from Luis Suarez to Wayne Rooney, Michu and most recently Yohan Cabaye. Wenger has lost out in his bid to land Napoli’s Gonzalo Higuain and Gustavo, who has joined VFL Wolfsburg. Saturday’s home defeat to Villa and a lengthy injury list which now includes Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain has brought their lack of transfer activity into sharpfocus and Tim Payton, a spokesperson for AST, is critical of Wenger. “We don’t know what’s going on but clearly there’s a manager that by his own words isn’t a big fan of spending money on strengthening the team through expensive players acquisition,” said Payton. “His apparent obsession with being a developmental manager is in danger of holding the club back.” The AST is a group of over 800 members who own a handful of shares in the club. They do not doubt the fact that there is money at the club’s disposal for summer dealings and are however baffled by the incessant and disreputable lack of transfer activity. “The fact that there is money availablefor squad strengthening is not disputed. The AST’s independent analysis suggests that the amount is somewhere between £70m to £100m,”the AST said. “For several transfer windows now, Arsenal have not used all the resources available to strengthen the team.
“A decision on whether to offer an extension to the manager’s contract which ends in May 2014 should only be taken following the closing of the transfer window and the assessment ofthe team’s performance in the weeks ahead,” the AST statement added. “Considerable improvement must be shown for us to be convinced this should happen.” The AST called upon Arsenal’s majority shareholder Stan Kroenke, who owns more than 66% of the club, to appoint an independent expert to conduct a review of all football functions at Arsenal. Since taking over the reins of Arsenal, Wenger has won three league titles and four FA Cups. He led the club to the 2000 Uefa Cup final and the 2006 Uefa Champions League final. Most notably in the history of Arsenal and Wenger is the record 49 games unbeaten run of 2004. So far, the Gunners have gone from being a title contender to struggling for a fourth-place finish, tantamount totheir difficult start to the 2013/14 season with a Champions League group stage qualifier against Fenerbahce in Istanbul on Wednesday. They return to face Fulham in a London derby on Saturday before hosting Fenerbahce in the return leg on August 27.

MONACO JOINS CHELSEA IN CHASE FOR PETERSBURG FORWARD HULK


Monaco could rival Chelsea in the race for Zenit St Petersburg forward Hulk, with the mega-rich French club ready to top their £110 million summer spend.

Hulk, 26, has failed to settle in Russia since his £35 million transfer to Zenit from FC Porto in September 2012.

The Brazilian international has been the subject of racist abuse from his own club’s fans since arriving in St Petersburg and is understood to have now resolved to leave the country.

A month after joining teammates in Russia’s second city, racist elements of the Zenit faithful called on Hulk to leave the club by planting a fake bomb at the side’s training ground.

Zenit are understood to be unwilling to let the want-away player leave on the cheap however.

The Russian Premier League side are believed to be asking for as much as £50 million for the player, who Chelsea have been tracking for some time already.

However, SportsDirect News understands that Monaco are in the market for one more massive transfer coup, after Russian billionaire owner Dmitri Rybolovlev was thwarted in his efforts to bring AC Milan midfielder Kevin Prince Boateng to Ligue 1.

Rybolovlev may turn his attention to Blues target Hulk, who is being kept in mind as an alternative to Jose Mourinho’s first choice, Edinson Cavani.

Friday, 16 August 2013

Nigeria's Okagbare wins bronze 200M in The Ongoing IAAF 2013 World Athletics Championship

Ivory Coast’s Murielle Ahoure, Nigeria’s Blessing Okagbare and Jamaica’s Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce compete during the women’s 200metres final at the 2013 IAAF World Championships at the Luzhniki stadium in Moscow on August 16,Nigeria’s Blessing Okagbare and Ivory Coast’s Murielle Ahoure recorded a first in World Athletics Championship when both of them, asAfrican representatives, clinched medals in the200 metres event in Moscow. Blessing who had set eyes on a gold medal, won the bronze medal in 22.32 secs and a reaction time of 0.154, while Ahoure who had won silver in the 100 metres event, displayed some consistency by also winning the silver medal. She returned the same time with Blessing, but a reaction time of 0.180. Okagbare has now won two medals, the first being a silver medal in the long jump. Jamaica’s Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce won the gold medal in 22.17 secs in the hotly contested 200 metre race, making it a double, having already won the gold in 100metres. Fraser-Pryce double also came same day that Somalia-born Briton, Mo Farah also got his owndouble in the 5000 metres. Farah at the Luzhniki Stadium, outfoxed the fast-paced Kenyan team tactics to become the second man to achieve the double of world and Olympics 5,000 and 10,000 metres titles. Farah, who won an emotional double gold at the Olympics last year clocked 13min 26.98sec to emulate Kenenisa Bekele’s double-double at the 2008 Beijing Olympics and 2009 Berlin worlds. “It’s something I have worked very hard for. I was thinking about the kids and being away from them for so long,” said Farah, who trains under Alberto Salazar in Portland, Oregon. “There was a lot of pressure but I enjoyed it and I am proud to hold the Union Jack.” As expected, the Kenyans adopted a different race strategy in a bid to disrupt the Briton’s rhythm. But Farah kept his nerve and his place towardsthe front of the pack all the way through to thefinal 650 metres when he accelerated away, fending off the attentions of Ethiopian Hagos Gebrhiwet, who won silver in a photo-finish from Kenyan Isiah Koech. Jamaica’s 26-year-old Fraser-Pryce just like the100 metres race on Monday, again dominated the 200 metre race, with three-time champion Allyson Felix of the United States pulling up injured not even halfway through. In other finals in the field on Friday, Germany’sChristian Storl retained his shot put title, and Russia sealed two more golds, Tatyana Lysenko retaining her hammer throw title with a best of 78.80m and Aleksandr Menkov claiming the men’s long jump crown with a best of 8.56m. The US men’s quartet, for whom 400m individual world champion Lashawn Merritt ranthe final leg, won the 4x400m relay in 2:58.71,stretching their winning streak that dates backto the 2005 worlds in Helsinki.