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Category Archives: Sports

Sports

REAL MADRID’S MARCELO: “WE FEEL LIKE WE ARE SINKING

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REAL MADRID’S MARCELO: “WE FEEL LIKE WE ARE SINKING

Real Madrid defender Marcelo says “we feel like we are sinking” after a 1-0 home defeat by Villarreal left the Spanish champions 16 points behind leaders Barcelona.
Pablo Fornals’ late chip increased the pressure on Zinedine Zidane’s side.
“It is one of the worst situations I’ve experienced here,” said Marcelo, who has been at Real for 11 years.
“We’re trying to play good football, to move the ball around and score goals but it’s not coming off.”
Real are in the final Champions League spot, now only one point above Villarreal – who had never won at the Bernabeu.
They are 10 points behind Atletico Madrid, and eight off Valencia – both of whom won on Saturday.
Marcelo added: “It is how it looks from the outside – we are sad, angry and we feel like we are sinking.”
Zidane, who has led Real Madrid to two Champions Leagues and one La Liga title in his two years in charge, said his side “can turn this around”.
“We don’t deserve this, we think we played well but the ball just didn’t want to go in for us. I cannot explain why,” he said.
“Today was a hammer blow but we are going to turn things around on Thursday [at Leganes in the Copa del Rey].”
Real – who saw a Cristiano Ronaldo free-kick turned on to the bar – had 28 shots, more than any other side in a La Liga game this season.

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Sports

HOLGATE’S HOMOPHOBIA HISTORY SHOWS HE SHOULD COME WITH CLEAN HANDS TO JUSTICE AS HE ACCUSSES LIVERPOOL’S FIRMINHO OF RACISM

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HOLGATE’S HOMOPHOBIA HISTORY SHOWS HE SHOULD COME WITH CLEAN HANDS TO JUSTICE AS HE ACCUSSES LIVERPOOL’S FIRMINHO OF RACISM

Nelson Dafe

It’s somewhat funny how the noise of the racism accusation leveled against Liverpool’s ace attacker Roberto Firminho by Everton’s young defender Mason Holgate has considerably quietened down.
Let’s refresh the memory a little bit. Liverpool hosted Everton in a bitter Merseyside derby in the English FA Cup recently and during the feisty clash, Everton’s Holgate violently pushed Firminho into the advertising hoardings. The livid Liverpool man furiously reacted, using some words on Holgate,  who got incenced and had to be restrained by teammates from escalating the incident further. Colgate (21) complained to the ref and his teammates that Firminho had called him the racist term ‘nigger ‘.
Underscoring the weight of such accusations, the FA has decided to launch an investigation into the incident and to determine weather there is truth in Holgate’s accusation.
“The FA can confirm that referee Bobby Madley was made aware of an allegation during the Liverpool versus Everton game at Anfield last night and has subsequently reported this to the FA, which will now begin making enquiries into the matter,” read an English FA statement.
Just as we were bracing for what would be the outcome of such investigations, with some UK newspapers already deploying lip readers to figure out what Firminho actually said to Holgate in Portuguese, Liverpool fans were doing their own research on Holgate and a search of his twitter history revealed a history of serious anti-gay tweets.
After the match, Liverpool fans shared screenshots of tweets apparently sent by Holgate between 2012 and 2013.

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Sports

SUPER EAGLES TO PLAY AGAINST ENGLAND IN FRIENDLY ON JUNE 2

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Nelson Dafe (with additional reporting from The BBC).

As part of preparations for the World Cup coming up later in the year in Russia, Nigeria’s senior national team, The Super Eagles, are scheduled to meet with England in a friendly encounter at the famous Wembley Stadium in London.

The match is to be played on June 2.

The match against England would give Nigeria the chance of testing its strength against an European opposition before the World Cup, where the country has been drawn in a group containing two European sides in Iceland and Croatia, as well as South American heavyweights Argentina. Continue reading

Sports

HOW LIBERIA’S NEW PRESIDENT PAID THE FEE TO GREATNESS AND WHAT YOUNG PLAYERS CAN LEARN FROM HIM – Nelson Dafe

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Football legend, George Weah. Photo: zeenews

A former grassroots footballer, one who rose from the slums and war ravaged Liberia of the 90s to become best player in the world in 2005, has just become president of Liberia.
George Opong Weah, the former Arsenal star defeated vice President Joseph Boakai in the run off presidential election recently held in that country and will now succeed current President Ellen Sirleaf.
The National Elections Commission said that with 98.1% of ballots counted, Mr Weah had won 61.5% of the vote.
Opponent Joseph Boakai was far behind with 38.5%.
For young boys in the grassroots football level, there’s a huge lesson to learn in the George Weah’s story. Here’s a man who lacked basic education, but had raw football skills. A man whose upbringing was tainted by a war that consumed many friends and family members and one which could dampen the highest of spirits and turn the most innocent of souls into a revengeful murderous monster.
But Weah had finer dreams. He wanted greatness in better ways than carrying a gun. For him, what separated him and the best football stars in the world were simply skills, mental and physical skills that he could learn. And he set apart to make the necessary sacrifices to become great.
A retired basketball player, now a World renowned psychologist John Amaechi in one of his motivational videos on YouTube urged aspiring basketball stars to be ready to pay the FEE  to greatness if they ever really desired to be great.  By the FEE, Amaechi meant Focus, Effort and Execution.

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Sports

WENGER BLASTS ARSENAL LEGEND THIERY HENRY, MOURINHO HITS OUT AT MAN U LEGEND SCHOLES

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Report by Nelson Dafe

Arsene Wenger

Two top Premier League managers, Arsenal’s Arsene Wenger and Manchester United’s Jose Mourinho have had enough of the criticisms coming to their respective clubs by former and well respected great players of the the clubs.
First it was Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger who took a swipe at Arsenal club legend Thiery Henry after the Sky Sports analyst suggested that there was disunity in the Arsenal team.
After Arsenal attacker Alexis Sanchez scored against Crystal Palace in an away Premier League fixture for the Gunners, he seemed to gesture to teammate Alexandre Lacazzette about some of his other teammates not joining in the celebration of the goal.
A number of pundits seized on this and claimed that all wasn’t well between the players and that there must be some ill feelings against Sanchez being held by some players.
One of such pundits is Henry, who made a phenomenal rise in the game under Wenger and won lots of individual and club honors with Arsene’s Arsenal. He had said after Chilean attacker Sanchez scored that:“There is a division in the team. He is asking them to come and celebrate. ‘Why are you not coming? Don’t you want t celebrate?’.
“I noticed it. Sanchez made me notice it. It was like he thought he was alone.”
After Arsenal’s late draw away against West From on New Year’s Eve, Wenger responded on Henry’s comments by insinuating that the Arsenal legend makes unintelligent comments. Wenger said:”We focus on our own problems, that’s the only thing.
“There are people who are paid to talk, it’s difficult sometimes when you are paid to talk, to talk, to talk and only say things that are true and intelligent.”
If Wenger’s comments about a retired great player of his club was surprisingly harsh, Manchester United’s manager Jose Mourinho’s put down of a very well respected Man Utd legend Paul Scholes was way more astonishing in its harshness.

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Sports

MOURINHO HAS GONE FROM THE ‘SPECIAL ONE’ TO THE ‘BORING ONE’

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Jose Mourinho. Photo credit: metro.co.uk

Ever since Manchester United’s 1-2 home loss some weeks ago to Manchester City,  there seems to have been a sense of resignation amongst the Red Devils camp about their ability to lift the English premier League title this season.
Before that meeting, United were 8 points behind table toppers City and there was some measurable hope from United that if they were able to stop Pep Guardiola’s troops from winning, then the Premier League title race would remain open and could still be won. But City were in no mood to give up their long winning run. They ran away as convincing winners at United’s Old Trafford.
Since then Man City have continued winning and now are many points ahead of United.  Man United seem to have let their heads drop and they haven’t been able to put on a winning run since.  In their last four games, the club have lost one, in the League Cup to lower League side Bristol, and have drawn 3 including their last two home games to Burnley (2-2) and Southampton (0-0).
In truth, Man United have played very boring football recently. Perhaps, it’s keeping in line with the conservative style of manager Jose Mourinho who has never been known to giving his teams the creative freedom to play expansive and attacking football for a long stretch of games.

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Sports

You have to get use to MAN City big spending, Wenger tells Mourinho

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Arsene Wenger

Arsène Wenger has told José Mourinho that he has spent the duration of his 21 years at Arsenal as a poor relation of the Premier League’s financial elite. Mourinho said on Boxing Day that his lavish spend on players since he took charge at Manchester United in the summer of last year – which stands at £261m – was not enough to level the playing field with Manchester City . Continue reading

Sports

Eboue’s ordeal is a reminder to footballers of the need for education

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Eboue

Arsenal’s former star Emmanuel Eboue has been in the news recently and the story has quickly moved from one of sadness to a happier turn. Eboue, who once slept in a palatial home and drove expensive cars, recently disclosed he is bankrupt.

Many were stunned to read of the Ivorian International ‘s plight of going from a multimillionaire footballer not so long ago to a broke dude who couldn’t afford a washing machine.

Then quite quickly, his former club, Gal at a Sarah of Turkey moved to his rescue by offering a job as coach of their under 14 side and a chance to rebuild his life.

The tale of Eboue going broke filled me with pity as I read that he contemplated suicide after he was suspended from football for a year for failing to fulfill his contractual agreement with a former agent of his, taking away his number one source of making money.

Then more heartbreakingly, the woman who was supposed to be the person of his life, the one he had sworn to live forever with till death comes calling, the woman he called wife left him in financial tatters as she left him in a divorce that meant he lost most of his property to her, and also, the custodianship of his children. Continue reading

Sports

Chelsea goes second on the table with a 5-0 win over Stoke

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Chelsea wins

Chelsea temporarily climbed into second place above Manchester United, in the English Premier League on Saturday after spanking Stoke City 5-0 at Stamford Bridge.

Antonio Conte’s side made the perfect start when German defender Antonio Rudiger rose above three Stoke defenders to head home from Willian’s free-kick in the third minute.

Eden Hazard was rested on the Chelsea bench, but his replacement Drinkwater did a passable impression of the brilliant Belgian, the midfielder bagging his first goal for the Blues with a blistering strike from the edge of the area in the ninth minute.

Stoke boss Mark Hughes’s decision to field a severely weakened team in the midst of the hectic festive fixture list was backfiring badly.

The visitors were three down by the 23rd minute when Pedro finished off Willian’s pass to put Chelsea on course for a fourth win in their last five league games.

Willian got on the scoresheet himself in the 73rd minute, striking home a penalty awarded for a foul on the Brazilian, before wing-back Davide Zappacosta grabbed his first Premier League goal with two minutes remaining. Continue reading

Sports

Sanchez helps Arsenal to escape Palace fire

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Alexis Sanchez. Photo credit: Evening Standard

Sanchez’s brace helps Arsenal defeat hard-fighting Palace

Two goals in quick succession by Alexis Sanchez helped Arsenal claim a hard-fought 3-2 victory over Crystal Palace at Selhurst Park.

Arsenal took the lead on 25 minutes when Shkodran Mustafi tucked the ball home at the back post before Palace replied just after the break with Andros Townsend’s smart finish.

The visitors responded with two goals from Sanchez.

The first arrived when he smashed the ball just inside the near post on 62 minutes with the second coming four minutes later after he latched on to Jack Wilshere’s superb ball over the top.

Palace set up a grandstand finish when James Tomkins headed in Townsend’s corner with a minute to go but Arsenal hung on to claim their second win in three league matches.

Arsenal remain in sixth place, level on points with fifth-placed Spurs, while Palace are in 16th after their first defeat in nine matches.

*Reported by www.premierleague.com

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