Archive for Football

Manchester United, Arsenal draw 1-1 in EPL clash

Manchester United were held to a 1-1 draw at home by Arsenal on Monday in a Premier League game which was a poor imitation of some of the past clashes between the clubs.

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang’s 58th minute goal, given after VAR review, cancelled out Scott McTominay’s well-struck opener on the stroke of halftime, but it was a game which highlighted the weaknesses of the two teams.

The result leaves United in 10th place with just nine points, their worst start after seven games for 30 years and they have won just one of their last six league games.

Arsenal are in fourth spot on 12 points but their nine-point gap with leaders Liverpool illustrates just how far away they are from being real contenders.

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Lionel Messi Wins FIFA Men’s Player Of The Year Award

Argentine international and Barcelona forward, Lionel Messi has won the footballer of the year award at the FIFA awards.

He beat favourite Virgil Van Dijk, who won the European Player of the year prize last month.

Messi has now won six world player of the year awards, one ahead of rival, Cristiano Ronaldo

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp won the men’s coach of the year.

‘Its time to punish racists’ – FIFA urges Italy

FIFA president Gianni Infantino has urged Italian soccer authorities to hand out stadium bans for supporters guilty of racism after another incident in a Serie A match between Atalanta and Fiorentina on Sunday.

Play was briefly suspended after Fiore’s Brazilian wing-back Dalbert reportedly told referee Daniele Orsato he had been the target of racist abuse from fans at the Stadio Ennio Tardini in Parma, where Atalanta are based while their ground is revamped.

An announcement was read over the stadium loudspeaker urging supporters to stop and the game, which finished 2-2, then continued, but Infantino believes the problem must be taken more seriously. Read more

Ihedioha appoints Kanu Nwankwo SSA on Sports

Imo State governor has appointed Nigeria’s football legend. Kanu Nwankwo as his Senior Special Assistant on Sports.

Ihedioha made the announcement when Kanu visited him at the government House Owerri to present his CAF medal.

According to a statement by

“ Izuchukwu Akwarandu, the governor’s aide on new media, Kanu Nwankwo’s appointment is with immediate effect.

“Papilo, as fondly called by his fans, came to present his most recent CAF award, which was given to him at the just concluded Nations Cup in Egypt, to the sports-loving governor of Imo State. The star also presented a branded jersey to the governor.” Read more

30 years after: Soccer fans remember Okwaraji

Ebonyi football fans on Monday remembered the late Nigerian midfield maestro, Samuel Okwaraji, who died on Aug. 30, 2019 at the National Stadium, Lagos during a World Cup qualifier against Angola.

The fans who spoke to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abakaliki said the memory of Okwaraji who slumped during the encounter, would remain evergreen in their minds due to the rare qualities he displayed during his lifetime.

A Soccer Historian, Julius Ijeaku, recalled that he was inside the jam-packed stadium on that day as several football fans died on the terraces out of possible suffocation.

“No one took notice of Okwaraji’s slumping until Samson Siasia saw him gasping and foaming from the mouth and subsequently raised alarm.

“The medics at the stadium tried resuscitating him before taking him to the hospital and before the end of the match, news have started flying that he had died,” he said.

Ikechukwu Itumo, Team Manager of Ebonyi United FC of Abakaliki, said that Okwaraji still holds the record of Nigeria’s most patriotic player even in death.

“He was not only reputed for offsetting his air fares to Super Eagles matches and declining collecting allowances, he related with his teammates with utmost humility in spite of being a doctorate degree holder in Law. Read more

Aubameyang wins EPL tie for Arsenal at Newcastle United

Steve Bruce’s reign as Newcastle United manager began in disappointing fashion as Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang’s second half goal sealed a 1-0 victory for Arsenal at a subdued St James’ Park on Sunday.

After a largely forgettable first half in which Newcastle United were slightly the better side, Arsenal eased to a comfortable three points thanks to Aubameyang’s 58th minute strike.

Newcastle United handed 40 million pounds record signing Joelinton a debut up front and he showed some flashes of intent in the first half but the hosts fizzled out after the break.

The Gunners had to wait until April to keep their first away clean sheet in the English Premier League (EPL) last season. Read more

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EPL: Alex Iwobi joins Everton

Alex Iwobi has signed for Everton from Arsenal for an undisclosed fee after agreeing a five-year deal until the end of June 2024.

The 23-year-old forward is the Blues’ seventh and final signing of the summer transfer window following the additions of goalkeeper Jonas Lössl, right-back Djibril Sidibe, midfielders Andre Gomes, Fabian Delph and Jean-Philippe Gbamin, and striker Moise Kean.

Nigeria international Iwobi, who has 36 caps and helped his country to the Africa Cup of Nations semi-finals this summer, came through Arsenal’s academy before making his first-team debut for the Londoners in October 2015 at the age of 19. Read more

Arsenal FC: Nicolas Pepe becomes record signing

Winger Nicolas Pepe has become our record signing after joining us from Ligue 1 club Lille.

The 24 year-old Ivory Coast international completed the paperwork on his move on Thursday. He will wear the No.19 shirt.

Head coach Unai Emery said: “Nicolas is a highly-rated and talented winger who was wanted by many of the top teams in Europe.

“Signing a top-class winger has been one of our key objectives in this transfer window and I’m delighted he’s joining. Read more

History made as UEFA names female referee for men’s match

Stephanie Frappart will become the first female official to referee a major UEFA men’s match when she takes charge of the Super Cup between Liverpool and Chelsea.

UEFA have confirmed Frappart, who refereed the FIFA Women’s World Cup final between the United States and the Netherlands in Lyon, will officiate the clash between the Champions League and Europa League winners in Istanbul on August 14.

Frappart will lead a team made up of predominantly female officials in the European season’s curtain raiser, with Manuela Nicolosi of France and Michelle O’Neal from the Republic of Ireland appointed as the assistant referees.

UEFA president Aleksander Ceferin believes Frappart’s appointment represents another significant step forward for women’s football. Read more

Barcelona lose Copa del Rey title to Valencia

Valencia beat Barcelona 2-1 to win the Copa del Rey on Saturday, ending the Spanish champions’ four-year winning streak in the competition and denying them a domestic double.

Kevin Gameiro and Rodrigo Moreno struck first-half goals to give Marcelino’s dominant Valencia control of the final in Seville’s sweltering Benito Villamarin stadium.

Record 30-times Cup winners Barcelona struggled without injured duo Luis Suarez and Ousmane Dembele but Lionel Messi pulled the Catalans back into the game with a finish from close range.

Goncalo Guedes missed a gilt-edged chance in stoppage-time for Valencia but they held on to win their first major trophy since last lifting the Cup in 2008.

Chelsea face Arsenal in Europa Cup final

Chelsea FC have qualified for the final of this year’s Europa Cup after defeating German clubside Eintracht Frankfurt 4-3 on penalties.

Eden Hazard stepped up to smash home the winning penalty to book final spot after the match ended 1-1 after full time.

Chelsea opened the scoring through the in-form Ruben Loftus-Cheek, who rattled the bottom corner of the Frankfurt goal after being picked out following a passage of trickery from Eden Hazard.

The Germans refused to roll over however, as talisman Luka Jovic hit back in the second half and controlled a Mijat Gacinovic pass to slot the ball into the bottom left corner to equalise.

With things all square on aggregate, the sides passed through extra-time with David Luiz saving Chelsea with a last gasp clearance off the line.

Penalties followed, with Chelsea winning despite Cesar Azpilicueta’s early miss.

Victory for Chelsea ensured they face Arsenal in an all-English final after the Gunners humbled Valencia 4-2 in an earlier semifinals encounter.

The win saw Arsenal progressing on 7-3 aggregate.

Super Eagles goalkeeper Carl Ikeme Announces His Retirement

Nigeria’s Super Eagles & Wolves goalkeeper Carl Ikeme has confirmed his retirement from the professional game.

The 32-year-old announced the news to his teammates before a training session at Compton on Tuesday morning.

The Wolves Academy product came to the decision after consultation with medical experts following his 12-month battle with acute leukaemia.

Last month Ikeme announced on Twitter that he was in complete remission from the disease after ‘a tough year and intense chemotherapy’.

The stopper now intends to take some time off with his young family before embarking on life after football.


Ikeme made 274 domestic career appearances in all competitions, with over 200 of them coming for Wolves, the club he joined in 2000 as a 14-year-old. Read more

Nigeria qualifies for 2018 FIFA World Cup #Russia 2018

  • Nigeria secure ticket to Russia 2018 with win over Zambia
  • First of Africa’s side to book their place
  • Will be their sixth appearance since debuting in 1994

Nigeria have become the first African side to book their place at 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia after a 1-0 win over Zambia in Uyo earned them an unassailable lead at the head of Group B.

Alex Iwobi repeated his feat of being the thorn in the Zambians’ side, once again finding himself on the scoresheet against the Chipolopolo. Having scored in the first Group B game between the sides, he came off the bench in the second half to end Zambian hopes of creating a final day climax on 6 November, instead seeing the Super Eagles book a spot at their sixth finals. Read more

GTBank holds Football Development Camp for Students and Coaches

Guaranty Trust Bank plc is set to sponsor 40 outstanding young talents discovered at its football tournaments as well as 60 school coaches on an all-expense paid intensive player development and coach-training programme tagged “Camp GTBank.”

 

Camp GTBank is a football and educational development initiative designed to train and develop outstanding football talents discovered at the GTBank football tournaments which include the GTBank-Lagos State Principals Cup, GTBank-Ogun State Principals Cup and the GTBank Masters Cup. Since its inception in 2011, Camp GTBank has helped kick start the careers of more than 120 footballers, some of whom have been selected to represent the country in international tournaments at various levels, and are currently playing in both domestic and foreign league clubs.

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