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Australia captain Jedinak out of World Cup showdowns

Australia captain Jedinak out of World Cup showdowns

23/08/2017, Nigeria, Multi Sports, Vanguard (publication), Article # 23843211

Australia’s hopes of qualifying for next year’s World Cup have been dealt a blow after injury concerns forced skipper Mile Jedinak out of a 23-man squad to face Japan and Thailand in crunch qualifiers.

Jedinak

Jedinak missed the Confederations Cup in June with a groin injury, and has yet to play for his English Championship club Aston Villa this season.

Football Federation Australia (FFA) said on its website the 33-year-old was only now being eased back into action at Villa after battling injury woes over the past few months.

The Socceroos are unbeaten but lie third on their Group B table with 16 points, behind Saudi Arabia on goal difference, with Japan top with 17 points.

This means Australia are one spot outside the automatic qualifying spots for the World Cup in Russia next year, with a win over the Blue Samurai crucial.

Japan are due to face Saudi Arabia in Jeddah in their last group game.

Coach Ange Postecoglou said he opted for experience for the games — against Japan in Saitama on August 31, and against Thailand in Melbourne on September 5 — with Awer Mabil and Danny Vukovic the only uncapped players.

“I believe that the players that we have named today are ready for these two very important matches,” Postecoglou said.

“Our focus is to get a positive result against Japan and then look to finish the group stage with a win on home soil in Melbourne against Thailand.”

Australia: Mustafa Amini (Aarhus Gymnastikforening/DEN), Tim Cahill (Melbourne City/AUS), Milos Degenek (Yokohama Marinos/JPN), Alex Gersbach (Rosenborg/NOR), Jackson Irvine (Burton Albion/ENG), Tomi Juric (Luzern/SUI), Robbie Kruse (Bochum/GER), Mitchell Langerak (Stuttgart/GER), Mathew Leckie (Hertha BSC/GER), Massimo Luongo (QPR/ENG), Awer Mabil (Paços De Ferreira/POR), Jamie Maclaren (Darmstadt/GER), Ryan McGowan (Guizhou Zhicheng/CHN), Mark Milligan (Melbourne Victory/AUS), Aaron Mooy (Huddersfield Town/ENG), Tom Rogic (Celtic/SCO), Mathew Ryan (Brighton & Hove Albion/ENG), Trent Sainsbury (Jiangsu Suning/CHN), Brad Smith (Bournemouth/ENG), Matthew Spiranovic (Hangzhou Greentown/CHN), James Troisi (Melbourne Victory/AUS), Daniel Vukovic (Genk/BEL), Bailey Wright (Bristol City/ENG).

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Rooney quality under-valued, says Lineker

Rooney quality under-valued, says Lineker

23/08/2017, Nigeria, Multi Sports, Vanguard (publication), Article # 23843212

Wayne Rooney’s true worth as a player has not been properly appreciated, according to England football great Gary Lineker.

Wayne Rooney has signed a two-year deal with Everton

Rooney has looked rejuvenated since returning to Everton, the club that nurtured his talent when he was a teenager, after becoming an unhappy-looking peripheral figure at Manchester United under Jose Mourinho.

The 31-year-old has scored in both his league appearances for Everton — including Monday’s against Manchester City when he joined Alan Shearer as the only players to score 200 Premier League goals — and has garnered support for a recall to the England squad which will be named on Thursday.

Lineker — who also starred for both Everton and England — said Rooney should figure among the top 10 in British football’s hall of fame.

“He probably is,” Lineker said, referring to whether Rooney is under-appreciated.

“He’d be (one of Britain’s) top 10 ever — he’s had a marvellous career.

“He’s been a great player for English football.”

Lineker, who scored 48 times in his 80 international appearances, said Rooney had too often during his international career carried the burden of being the national side’s only world-class player.

“England went through a time of being bereft of world-class talent — it was just him,” said the 56-year-old, who also starred for Barcelona and Tottenham Hotspur.

“He’s gone to play in tournaments, sometimes not fully fit, sometimes fit, in a team that’s not really good enough, and he’s suffered a little bit from that.”

Lineker, who like Rooney also failed to land a major global trophy with England, said it was a case of what might have been if Rooney had stayed fit at Euro 2004 in Portugal.

Rooney had scored four times in the tournament before he broke a bone in his foot.

“Those of us who remember his early career — he was phenomenal,” said Lineker.

“He did it in Portugal. We might have gone on to win that one if he hadn’t (got injured), we were looking so good.”

Lineker also attributes Rooney’s lack of recognition to partisan football fans.

“Everyone gets a bit under-appreciated because we are a judgemental society but it’s also very tribal, football — if he’s playing for Manchester United, automatically a lot of people would dislike him,” said Lineker.

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Mikel, Ighalo lead Super Eagles squad for Cameroon

Mikel, Ighalo lead Super Eagles squad for Cameroon

23/08/2017, Nigeria, Multi Sports, Vanguard (publication), Article # 23842135

Super Eagles’ Technical Adviser Gernot Rohr has named team captain Mikel Obi, forward Odion Ighalo and Israel–based marksman Anthony Nwakaeme as squad members ahead of the battle against Cameroon on 1 September.

Nwesmen report that Rohr, on Tuesday, released his list of players for the 2018 FIFA World Cup qualifying duels with Cameroon’s Indomitable Lions.

Mikel Obi

According to reports on the NFF’s website, Germany-based defender Leon Balogun returns after missing the World Cup qualifier against Algeria and the Africa Cup qualifier against South Africa.

Chelsea of England’s wing back, Victor Moses, is also back after sitting out the duel with the Bafana Bafana in June due to injury.

Rohr has largely kept fate with his regular squad, including goalkeepers Daniel Akpeyi, Ikechukwu Ezenwa and Dele Alampasu.

Defenders William Ekong, Elderson Echiejile and Abdullahi Shehu, midfielders Ogenyi Onazi, John Ogu, Wilfred Ndidi and Oghenekaro Etebo, forwards Ahmed Musa, Moses Simon, Alex Iwobi and Kelechi Iheanacho made the list.

Nigeria welcomes the reigning African champions to the Godswill Akpabio International Stadium, Uyo on Sept. 1, before flying to Yaounde for a quickfire return session on Sept. 4.

The Super Eagles are top of Africa’s 2018 FIFA World Cup Qualifying Group B with six points, after wins over Zambia and Algeria in their first two matches.

The Lions lie second with only two points following 1-1 draws with Algeria and Zambia.

Seven other players have been placed on standby, but any of them would be contacted to move to camp only in case there is any issue with any player on the star-studded team.

THE FULL LIST

Goalkeepers: Daniel Akpeyi (Chippa United, South Africa); Ikechukwu Ezenwa (FC IfeanyiUbah); Dele Alampasu (Cesarense FC, Portugal)

Defenders: William Ekong (Bursaspor FC, Turkey); Abdullahi Shehu (Anorthosis Famagusta, Cyprus); Leon Balogun (FSV Mainz 05, Germany); Tyronne Ebuehi (ADO Den Haag, The Netherlands); Elderson Echiejile (Sivasspor FC, Turkey); Chidozie Awaziem (Nantes FC, France); Ola Aina (Hull City, England)

Midfielders: Mikel John Obi (Tianjin Teda, China); Ogenyi Onazi (Trabzonspor FC, Turkey); Wilfred Ndidi (Leicester City, England); Oghenekaro Etebo (CD Feirense, Portugal); John Ogu (Hapoel Be’er Sheva, Israel); Mikel Agu (Bursaspor FC, Turkey)

Forwards: Ahmed Musa (Leicester City, England); Kelechi Iheanacho (Leicester City, England); Moses Simon (KAA Gent, Belgium); Alex Iwobi (Arsenal FC, England); Odion Ighalo (Chang Chun-Yatai, China); Victor Moses (Chelsea FC, England); Anthony Nwakaeme (Hapoel Be’er Sheva, Israel)

STANDBY: Uche Agbo (Standard Liege, Belgium); Henry Onyekuru (Anderlecht FC, Belgium); Kenneth Omeruo (Chelsea FC, England); Aaron Samuel (CSKA Moscow, Russia); Alhassan Ibrahim (Akwa United); Stephen Eze (FC IfeanyiUbah); Ifeanyi Ifeanyi (Akwa United).

NAN

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Neymar to Barcelona chiefs: You are misfits

Neymar to Barcelona chiefs: You are misfits

23/08/2017, Nigeria, Multi Sports, Vanguard (publication), Article # 23842136

Neymar Jr., the world’s most expensive footballer has told FC Barcelona chiefs that they have no business running the team.

The Paris Saint Germain player spoke amidst reports that the Barcelona board had sued him for breach of contract and are asking for $10m in compensation.

Neymar

“I am disappointed with them (Barcelona directors). I spent four very happy years there and left happy, but not with them. For me they shouldn’t be in charge of Barcelona. Barca deserve much better and everyone knows this,” Neymar said

The Barcelona board dragged Neymar to court asking for 8.5 million euros ($10.00 million) for breach of contract as they want him to return the bonus he was paid when he signed a new five-year deal just nine months before joining Paris St Germain, the Spanish club said on Tuesday.

The Catalans are asking for an additional 10 percent payment due to a delay in their demands being met.

“Barcelona have taken these actions in defense of their interests, after Neymar’s contract was rescinded just a few months after he signed on until 2021,” a club statement said.

Brazilian striker Neymar, who joined PSG earlier this month after the French club triggered his 222 million euros release clause, said he was surprised by the decision but warned he was not going to give in.

“It is noteworthy that this news was received with surprise, since the athlete completely fulfilled the contract then in force, with the full deposit of the amounts set out in the buy-out clause freely agreed with F.C. Barcelona for his release,” Neymar’s representatives said in a statement.

The statement added that the 25-year-old forward’s lawyers were preparing a formal defense to the demands.

PSG activated Neymar’s release clause as Barcelona were unwilling to negotiate the sale of one of their best players.

Barcelona have passed the complaint to the Spanish football federation (RFEF) after first filing the lawsuit in court, as well as demanding PSG subsidize it, should Neymar not be able to take responsibility for it.

PSG brushed off that suggestion and said they had done all that was required of them.

“Paris Saint-Germain reiterates that, like Neymar Jr., it has always respected all applicable laws and rules in its dealings and, once again, regrets the attitude of FC Barcelona,” the club said in a statement.

In the days after he signed for the French club, Barcelona refused to pay the reported 26 million euro installment of the loyalty bonus which he was due to receive this summer, citing breach of contract.

NAN

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Nigeria sport:Falling standards, result of leadership vacuum

Nigeria sport:Falling standards, result of leadership vacuum

23/08/2017, Nigeria, Multi Sports, Vanguard (publication), Article # 23840112

By Jacob Ajom

Nigeria’s disastrous outing at the 2012 Olympics in  London sparked off a rash of reactions from Nigerians. The performance of Team Nigeria was so low that the number one citizen then, President Goodluck Jonathan initiated a one-day retreat on Sports. The retreat elicited a lot of interest from stakeholders that some even decried that one day was not enough to treat the numerous problems confronting Nigerian sports.

Speaking before the historic event, the then Minister of Sports, Mallam Bolaji Abdullahi said, “It is the first time that a President of Nigeria is calling for a retreat to address problems in our sports and we all need to lend a hand because the President means well and he is leading the way.”

The retreat held and it was hailed as one of the best legacies the Jonathan administration bequeathed to Nigeria before leaving office. As the retreat came so late into his administration, he could not execute the numerous recommendations made before leaving the seat of power.

However, like every other thing Nigerian where every new government wants to chart a new course, the report on the retreat has not been implemented. Indeed, there are fears that the President Muhammadu Buhari government may have consigned the report to the trash can.

This was eloquently demonstrated by the Minister of Sports, Solomon Dalung who, early in 2016, set up another ministerial committee to reform the sports sector. Dalung’s interest had nothing to do with the voluminous report from the Presidential retreat and others before it, rather his focus was how to make the private sector get  more involved in funding sports as, in his words, government could not do it alone.

However, over the years, research has shown that though funding is central in the prosecution of programmes, poor funding is only a part of the problems inhibiting the growth of Nigerian sports.

Most often, when funds are made available, officials siphon the money, leaving the athletes underfed, underpaid and under motivated.

Chairman of the defunct Ministerial committee on sports reform, Godwin Kienka, speaking in an interview with the Daily Sun of 28 May, 2016 said, “This committee’s task is a lot different from the previous ones and even some members that had served in some of the other committees and are also members here attest to that. We’ve gone through the various recommendations and I must confess there are plenty of postulations.

“For instance, it is difficult for a struggling mother who has not been paid for upwards of six months to position her child towards sports,” Kienka said.

Okagbare

Defining their terms of reference, the chairman of the Committee continued, “what we intend to do is to proffer solutions to our problems in Nigerian sports by hitting the nail on the head. The truth about the problem of our sports is that they are self-inflicted. From state sports councils to the sports ministry, everyone admitted that.” Till date, however, Nigerians are yet to know what job the Kienka Committee did as the Sports Ministry is yet to issue a white paper on it.

Non-functional national sports policy slows down devt

The Nigeria national sports policy is a richly crafted document which, if followed to the letter, could catapult the country into a sports giant. Some of the key aspects of the policy include the co-ordination of sports development programmes at all levels of government. For instance the federal government through the National Sports Commission is expected to initiate programmes aimed at identifying, nurturing and developing talents through a national elite development programme – like state sports festivals, the national sports festival, national youth games, etc.

In the introductory part the document states that, “sport authorities at the National, State and Local Government levels shall undertake periodic assessment of sporting activities to check weaknesses, capacity gaps and adopt appropriate programme of action to correct them”.

The present government seems to have frittered away whatever gains that had been made in the past, particularly, as it affects effective co-ordination of developmental sporting activities. For instance, the 19th National Sports Festival was awarded to Cross River State in 2012. The festival tagged “Paradise Games 2014” would have held in December of that year. .Four years after the last festival hosted by Lagos, the Sports Festival, Nigeria’s local Olympiad has failed to hold. It does not need a fortune teller to tell us that Cross River State that was supposed to host the Games has failed. The National Council on Sports  which is under the leadership of the Ministry of Sports and Youth Development has also failed in its role as a catalyst. The National Council on Sports under an effective leadership was supposed to have found an alternative host as replacement for CRS.

Even at the local government level, there are supposed to be in place periodic sports meets. The events could be sports specific – like an annual relay race or the jumps etc. In Nigeria, nothing like that takes place except in the books. Unless the National Sports Policy which has clearly identified growth from the grassroots as key to our sports development is activated and becomes functional, not much could be attained in that direction.

Lack of active base in educational institutions and communities

There is also this fundamental problem of lack of an active base in educational institutions and communities. In other climes, school sports forms the very foundation of sporting excellence in a nation. The Americans, the Jamaicans, the Europeans all have functional school sports systems that feed the sporting needs of their countries. Back in the days, Nigeria had a robust culture where one heard of the Academicals.

Before now, the Principals Cup, State Academicals, Schools sports festivals were commonplace among the federating states. This has witnessed a slide in numerous states as only a few still organise the annual Principals Cup. Schools sports is near extinct in most states as some schools don’t even have play grounds. The nearest such schools come to sports is perhaps, during the annual inter-house sports competitions held once a year on hired grounds. Some schools look forward to the income such events bring to the school than the benefits they bring to the pupils and students. School competitions like the Principals Cup produced a lot of football stars that later developed into full time internationals. The Haruna Ilerikas, Segun Odegbamis, Adokiye Amiesimakas, among others, were some of the products of the Academicals.

Higher institutions in Nigeria sparingly hold inter-collegiate sports like the popular NUGA Games among universities, NIPOGA for the polytechnics and NACEGA for Colleges of Education. All these live in their past glories and that is why Nigerian sports have stagnated. Records set 20 years ago still stand as there are no longer athletes of serious consideration.

Similarly, the communities that were the bedrock of talent hunt have vanished into thin air. One was told stories of clubs that sprang up from communities like the Lagos Boys clubs, community based football clubs like the defunct Ikpeazu Redoubtables in Onitsha, Calabar, the Zik Athletics Club, etc. In some of these clubs one had at least three or four sports disciplines. In Lagos, for instance, there existed numerous local Table Tennis clubs and recreational centres. That was then. All that was used to mop up local talents that may not have found their way to schools. It was always said, albeit ignorantly, that those who were good in sports were usually school dropouts.

Fact is grassroots development in sports has since become a thing of the past as even in our athletics, Nigeria now use naturalised athletes from other countries to compete in international events. In football, which Nigeria parades one of the best records in youth football, the Super Eagles is now dominated by players who, though of Nigerian descent, were neither born nor brought up here.

Writing in his column recently, former Nigeria international and national team captain, Chief Segun Odegbami said, “Gernot Rohr, the new German coach of Nigeria’s national football team, has been combing European leagues for players of Nigerian parentage, groomed on the rich technical diet of European football, to make up his emerging new Super Eagles en route Russia 2018.

Apparently, he has not been satisfied with the number and quality of players coming through the domestic Nigerian leagues, players in the mould of Finidi George, Jay Jay Okocha, Daniel ‘the Bull’ Amokachi, ‘Papillo’ Nwankwo Kanu, Chief Justice Adokie Amiesimaka, Muda Lawal, Nathaniel Adewole, Stanley Okoronkwo, and so on, players with the true DNA of Nigerian football (strong, fast, unadulterated attacking and wing play mentality, never-giving-up spirit and love of the dribble art).

With the way things are going under Rohr, it is not far fetched to think that one day, in the not too distant future, Nigeria’s Super Eagles will be dominated by a foreign legion of European-born, bred and honed football players, good but lacking the flair, showmanship, individual expressiveness and dribbling skills of the home bred.

Check this present list and see for yourself: Carl Ikeme, William Troost Ekong, Leon Balogun, Kingsley Madu, Uche Henry Agbo, and Tyronne Ebuehi. There are more of them in coach Rohr’s radar.”

How the structure and management of sports affects funding of sports and sports development in Nigeria

It’s either that there is a deliberate conspiracy by the establishment to scuttle the dreams and development of millions of the Nigerian youth or that there is  a lack of full understanding  by all tiers of government of the place, roles, responsibilities, power and relevance of sports in a growing  economy as Nigeria’s.

In the annual national budget, what is the percentage allocated to sports? In the same interview quoted above, Kienka said, “there’s insincerity of purpose, greed, lack of respect for the athletes and the failure of not seeing sports as the second largest employer of labour that would create wealth for the athletes, their families, their communities and the society at large.”

Nigeria has become notorious in the international sporting arena where its contingent would indicate interest in participating in events and at the end they won’t show up. This year alone, the country has been absent from the Commonwealth Youth Games, World Junior Athletics Championships and the African Juniors which Nigeria was the defending champion. All because of “no money”. Ironically, the Sports Minister has attended all these programmes. For what use, no one has explained.

Funding sports has been central in the manner the sector has been run over the years. The sports Ministry is  also encumbered with the affairs of youth development. Some people have argued that sports be extricated from the ministry and in its place a National Sports Commission be formed. That was what obtained in the past. But the present administration under President Buhari did quite the opposite by scrapping the NSC. Now the minister is the beginning and the end to all things; like they say, the bulk stops on his table. He determines who gets what and who goes where. He approves funds for trips and stops those he does not fancy.  He even disburses the funds himself, like it was reported at the recently concluded IAAF World Athletics Championships in London. Even when his background shows he knows nothing about sports, it is the minister who determines the direction the country’s sports is going.

A National Sports Commission, headed by a technocrat will avoid lapses in planning and budgeting  and will act and advice the Presidency appropriately. There will be fewer, if any , policy somersaults in the administration of sports in the country.

Government’s influence in the administration of sports has been a big inhibition. The last elections into boards of federations was a clear index that government does not necessarily know the sporting needs of a nation. Elections are supposed to be held by federations according to statutes. But in the last election, the ministry was involved from the word go, set up election guidelines and greatly influenced the election outcomes.

Other myriad of problems inhibiting the growth and development of sports in Nigeria include lack of modern facilities and poor maintenance of existing facilities, the inability of the National Institute for Sports to fulfill its primary mandate. The NIS, which is supposed to be the engine room in the production of coaches for the country is a shadow of itself. Nigeria sports lack standards due to the leadership vacuum.

 

Proffered solutions:

It is worth mentioning that there should be a legislation to back up the existence of a National Sports Commission, establish structures, build facilities, increase funding, better training and reactivation of high performance centres for elite athletes.

Sports science is also vital in the scheme of things, school sports should be taken seriously, scholarships to budding talents and other incentives should be initiated and awarded to deserving athletes.

 

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Barcelona seeking 8.5m euros from Neymar over contract breach

Barcelona seeking 8.5m euros from Neymar over contract breach

23/08/2017, Nigeria, Multi Sports, Vanguard (publication), Article # 23840113

Barcelona are seeking at least 8.5 million euros ($10 million) in compensation from Neymar for breach of contract, the club said on Tuesday as the bitter fallout rumbles on from his world record 222 million-euro move to Paris Saint-Germain.

The move comes after Barcelona refused to pay a separate 26 million-euro bonus due to Neymar for signing a five-year contract renewal last year.

Neymar
Neymar

“In the lawsuit, the club demands the player return the already paid sum for his contract renewal as he has not completed his contract; 8.5 million euros in damages; and an additional 10 percent because of delayed payment,” Barcelona said in a statement.

Neymar’s family hit back on Tuesday in a statement released by the firm representing their interests.

“This news was received with surprise given that the player fully respected the contract valid at the time,” said NN Consultoria.

“As for the bonuses owed for the signature of the contract in 2016, stipulated in the contract and not paid by FC Barcelona…(Neymar) has already started formal proceedings to recover the money before the competent court.”

Despite being under contract, Barcelona were powerless to stop Neymar’s move to PSG earlier this month as the French side met the buyout clause in his contract.

Barca added the demand was lodged against Neymar on August 11 with Barcelona’s employment court, eight days after his stunning move to Ligue 1.

The Catalan giants have also passed the claim onto FIFA and the French Football Federation via the Spanish Football Federation to take what they see as “the appropriate legal effects”.

Moreover, Barca urged PSG to pay the amount they are seeking if Neymar — who is reported to earn 30 million euros a year after tax for the next five years in Paris — isn’t able to meet their demands.

– PSG ‘surprised’ –

PSG responded on Tuesday evening by saying they were “surprised” at Barcelona’s move.

“Paris Saint-Germain reiterates that, like Neymar Jr., it has always respected all applicable laws and rules in its dealings and, once again, regrets the attitude of FC Barcelona,” read a club statement in English.

Barcelona’s latest move comes two days after Neymar fiercely criticised the club’s under-fire board after scoring twice in a stunning home debut as PSG beat Toulouse 6-2 on Sunday.

“There are people in charge that shouldn’t be there,” Neymar told reporters.

“Barca deserve much more and everyone knows that.”

The split between Barca’s top players and board was evidenced as a smiling Neymar posted photos on his Instagram page of the Brazilian visiting former teammates including Lionel Messi, Luis Suarez, Gerard Pique and Ivan Rakitic on Tuesday.

“Friends that I missed,” Neymar wrote alongside a picture of him being embraced by Messi and Suarez.

Messi is yet to formally sign a new contract, the terms of which were agreed back in July, provoking speculation over his future.

The case is just the latest in a series of legal disputes that blighted Neymar’s four-year spell with Barcelona.

Barca president Josep Maria Bartomeu, former president Sandro Rosell, Neymar and his parents are to face trial for fraud and corruption in Spain over the murky transfer that brought the player from Santos to Barca in 2013.

Investment company DIS — who owned 40 percent of Neymar’s sporting rights at the time of the transfer — believe they were cheated out of their real share of the deal.

Barca also settled a case with the Spanish tax authorities over the transfer for 5.5 million euros last year.

Bartomeu is under mounting pressure as Barca have so far failed in their attempts to replace Neymar with bids for Liverpool’s Philippe Coutinho and Ousmane Dembele of Borussia Dortmund rebuffed.

Following Barca’s 5-1 aggregate thrashing by Real Madrid in the Spanish Super Cup last week, the hashtag “bartomeudimiteya” (Bartomeu resign now) was a trending topic worldwide on Twitter.

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NFF begins interviews of coaches for national teams

NFF begins interviews of coaches for national teams

23/08/2017, Nigeria, Multi Sports, Vanguard (publication), Article # 23840114

Abuja – The Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) on Tuesday began interview of 59 shortlisted coaches contending for various coaching positions in the national teams.

The football federation is shopping for competent hands to handle National U-23 team in both the male and female categories.

Others include the U-17 male and female teams, as well as U-20 male team only.

As at the time of this report, Mr Chris Green, the Chairman of NFF Technical and Development Committee and his members were still interviewing the aspirants.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Finidi George, Nduka Ugbade, Kennedy Boboye of Plateau United, Abdul Maikaba of Akwa United, Gbenga Ogunbote of Enyimba are the notable names on the list.

The NFF had earlier appointed Christopher Danjuma and others to handle the National Women U-20 team.

Those appointed to assist Danjuma were Wemimo Mathew (first Assistant coach), Mansur Abdullahi (Second Assistant coach) as well as Abdul-lateef Yusuf (Goalkeeper Trainer). (NAN

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Rohr names Mikel, 22 others for Cameroon battle

Rohr names Mikel, 22 others for Cameroon battle

23/08/2017, Nigeria, Multi Sports, Vanguard (publication), Article # 23838812

Abuja – Super Eagles’ Technical Adviser Gernot Rohr has named team captain Mikel Obi, forward Odion Ighalo and Israel–based marksman Anthony Nwakaeme as squad members ahead of the battle against Cameroon.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Rohr, on Tuesday, released his list of players for the 2018 FIFA World Cup qualifying duels with Cameroon’s Indomitable Lions.

Mikel, Musa and Moses

According to reports on the NFF’s website, Germany-based defender Leon Balogun returns after missing the World Cup qualifier against Algeria and the Africa Cup qualifier against South Africa.

Chelsea of England’s wing back, Victor Moses, is also back after sitting out the duel with the Bafana Bafana in June due to injury.

Rohr has largely kept fate with his regular squad, including goalkeepers Daniel Akpeyi, Ikechukwu Ezenwa and Dele Alampasu.

Defenders William Ekong, Elderson Echiejile and Abdullahi Shehu, midfielders Ogenyi Onazi, John Ogu, Wilfred Ndidi and Oghenekaro Etebo, forwards Ahmed Musa, Moses Simon, Alex Iwobi and Kelechi Iheanacho made the list.

Nigeria welcomes the reigning African champions to the Godswill Akpabio International Stadium, Uyo on Sept. 1, before flying to Yaounde for a quickfire return session on Sept. 4.

The Super Eagles are top of Africa’s 2018 FIFA World Cup Qualifying Group B with six points, after wins over Zambia and Algeria in their first two matches.

The Lions lie second with only two points following 1-1 draws with Algeria and Zambia.

Seven other players have been placed on standby, but any of them would be contacted to move to camp only in case there is any issue with any player on the star-studded team.

THE FULL LIST

Goalkeepers: Daniel Akpeyi (Chippa United, South Africa); Ikechukwu Ezenwa (FC IfeanyiUbah); Dele Alampasu (Cesarense FC, Portugal)

Defenders: William Ekong (Bursaspor FC, Turkey); Abdullahi Shehu (Anorthosis Famagusta, Cyprus); Leon Balogun (FSV Mainz 05, Germany); Tyronne Ebuehi (ADO Den Haag, The Netherlands); Elderson Echiejile (Sivasspor FC, Turkey); Chidozie Awaziem (Nantes FC, France); Ola Aina (Hull City, England)

Midfielders: Mikel John Obi (Tianjin Teda, China); Ogenyi Onazi (Trabzonspor FC, Turkey); Wilfred Ndidi (Leicester City, England); Oghenekaro Etebo (CD Feirense, Portugal); John Ogu (Hapoel Be’er Sheva, Israel); Mikel Agu (Bursaspor FC, Turkey)

Forwards: Ahmed Musa (Leicester City, England); Kelechi Iheanacho (Leicester City, England); Moses Simon (KAA Gent, Belgium); Alex Iwobi (Arsenal FC, England); Odion Ighalo (Chang Chun-Yatai, China); Victor Moses (Chelsea FC, England); Anthony Nwakaeme (Hapoel Be’er Sheva, Israel)

STANDBY: Uche Agbo (Standard Liege, Belgium); Henry Onyekuru (Anderlecht FC, Belgium); Kenneth Omeruo (Chelsea FC, England); Aaron Samuel (CSKA Moscow, Russia); Alhassan Ibrahim (Akwa United); Stephen Eze (FC IfeanyiUbah); Ifeanyi Ifeanyi (Akwa United). (NAN)

The post Rohr names Mikel, 22 others for Cameroon battle appeared first on Vanguard News.



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Ronaldo cries injustice as last appeal rejected

Ronaldo cries injustice as last appeal rejected

23/08/2017, Nigeria, Multi Sports, Vanguard (publication), Article # 23838813

Cristiano Ronaldo reiterated his anger at what he described as the “incomprehensible decision” to reject his final appeal against a five-match ban on Tuesday.

Ronaldo

Spain’s administrative sports court (TAD) dismissed Real Madrid’s latest appeal for the suspension handed out to the World Player of the Year for pushing a referee after being sent-off in the first leg of the Spanish Super Cup against Barcelona.

“Another incomprehensible decision,” Ronaldo posted to his over 57 million Twitter followers.

“Injustices will not knock me down. I will come back stronger.

“Thanks to those who have supported me.”

Ronaldo was controversially shown a second yellow card for diving after coming off the bench to score as Real won the first leg of the Spanish Super Cup 3-1 away to Barcelona.

The Portugal captain was handed a one-match ban for the 10th red card of his career and a further four-game suspension for pushing referee Ricardo de Burgos Bengoetxea in protest.

Ronaldo blasted his treatment by the Spanish Football Federation as “persecution” on his Instagram account after his first appeal was rejected last week.

“It seems to me exaggerated and ridiculous, this is called persecution!”

Ronaldo has already served two games of his suspension as Madrid completed a 5-1 aggregate win over Barcelona in the Super Cup second leg and as Real opened their La Liga campaign with a 3-0 win at Deportivo la Coruna.

Real will also be without their all-time top scorer for La Liga matches at home to Valencia and Levante and away at Real Sociedad.

However, Ronaldo will be free to play when the European champions begin their defence of the Champions League on September 12 or 13.

The post Ronaldo cries injustice as last appeal rejected appeared first on Vanguard News.



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